KARACHI, Feb 14: Justice Zahid Qurban Alvi of the Sindh High Court issued on Friday notices to the administration of Aga Khan University Hospital and others for Feb 17.

The notices were issued on a suit filed by plaintiff Salamul Haque for the recovery of Rs41.29 million as compensation for the death of his wife, who died on December 23, 2001 due to alleged negligence by the hospital’s administration.

Mr Haque submitted that his wife, Shakila Shamim, with sub-capital fracture neck of right femur, which she suffered on account of slip at home on October 30, 2001, visited Aga Khan Hospital the next day.

Nasir Maqsood, counsel for the plaintiff, stated that his client took his wife to Dr Pervaiz Hashmi, consultant orthopaedic surgeon, who analyzed latest reports, reviewed medical records and examined her.

He stated that the doctor showed willingness to go ahead with her surgical treatment and expressed no cause of concern nor conveyed anything about likely complications or apprehensions during surgical treatment. He expressed optimism that she would be on her feet within 5-7 days after operation.

Ms Shakila was admitted to the hospital on October 31, 2001 and evaluated pre-operatively in terms of blood CBC, blood coagulation study, blood bio- chemistry, chest X-ray, ECG and urine analysis. Dr Hashmi performed the surgery and she was shifted to ward under tremendous distress, both respiratory and abdominal distention. Doctors said it was normal post-operative phenomenon and there was nothing to worry about.

But the counsel stated her condition remained under severe distress despite procedures by the defendants. Since there was no improvement in her condition, she was referred to Dr Mubashir Ikram, ENT consultant, for evaluation, and he diagnozed bilateral abductor paralysis of vocal cords.

The counsel alleged that the plaintiff was told that no other team was willing to take charge of his wife as the case had been mishandled. Later, she died due to cardio-respiratory failure because of acute respiratory distress syndrome, spesis and acute renal failure on December 23, 2001.

The SHC issued notices to the defendants for Feb 17 on an urgent application by the plaintiff praying to direct the Nazir of the SHC to take custody of the medical record of Aga Khan University Hospital and keep it after attachment in his custody during pendency of the suit.

LAND DISPUTE CASE: A division bench of the High Court of Sindh disposed of on Friday four high court appeals while ordering maintenance of status quo till the disposal of suits pertaining to title of land.

The bench comprised Justice Sabihuddin Ahmed and Justice S. Ali Aslam Jafri.

The appeals were filed by the Jamiat-i-Punjabi Saudagaran against an order of a single judge of the SHC vacating stay against other claimants of the same land, including political figures.

When the appeals came up for hearing before the bench, Raja Haq Nawaz, appearing for the appellant, submitted that the land was allotted to the Jamiat-i-Punjabi Saudagaran, which was recognized as a social welfare organization by the now defunct Karachi Development Authority.

He maintained that Syed Ghous Ali Shah, then chief minister, instructed the KDA to allot the land to the organization against a price of Rs35 per square yard. The land was to be divided into 3,000 plots of 83.5 square yards each for onward allotment to poor members of the community.

The counsel maintained that the Jamiat paid the price of the land and other charges to the KDA, developed the land and plots were allotted to its members for raising construction.

The petitioner maintained that later some other persons claimed the title maintaining that the land had been allotted to them by Jam Sadiq Ali, former Sindh chief minister. He submitted the dates of allotment to the respondent/ defendants in suits filed by the Jamiat, including Abdul Salam Jatoi (20 acres), Rana Hameer Singh and daughter-in-law Raj Kumari (10 acres).

The counsel for the appellant submitted that dates of allotments were such that in those days CM Jam Sadiq was lying on death bed. Two months before his death, he (Jam Sadiq) was unable to talk, so how could he pass such orders, contended the counsel. He said Imtiaz Shaikh, then secretary land utilization, made endorsements on an application moved by the claimants that the CM had approved the allotment.

The counsel contended that during the corresponding period, a complete ban was existing on allotment/conversion, consolidation or exchange of land within the territorial limits of Karachi district.

The ban had been in force since 1986 and till date not been lifted, contended the counsel for the appellant.

Answering a question by the bench, he said some of the land, located in sector 30 of Korangi township, was in possession of the appellant, some in possession of the defendants and some in the possession of the army.

Replying to another query, he said appeals were filed as the single judge vacated the stay order granted in favour of the appellant.

The serious question of title was involved. He said the appellant would be distributing the land among its poor members. When the bench referred to Ordinance III of 2001, the counsel said it was binding on all parties.

The bench also heard Khalilur Rahman, advocate, counsel for Abdul Salam Jatoi.— PPI/APP