SHC directs government to file statement regarding turning Qasr-e-Fatima into girls medical college­

Jamal Khurshid
Sunday, Oct 10, 2021

The Sindh High Court (SHC) has directed a provincial law officer to file a statement on what assistance can be provided by the Sindh government to achieve the ends of using Mohtarma Fatima Jinnah’s heritage property Qasr-e-Fatima, commonly known as Mohatta Palace, for the establishment of modern medical college for girls.

The direction came on a lawsuit filed by relatives of Fatima Jinnah pertaining to the administration of her moveable and immovable properties, which was pending since 1970s in the court. The litigation was initiated following the award of succession certificate to Shireen Jinnah, the only surviving sister of Fatima Jinnah after her death on July 10, 1967.

The high court was informed that relatives of Fatima Jinnah and the Shireen Jinnah Charitable Trust had considered the matter and progressed to amicably settle the longstanding dispute with regard to the property left by Fatima Jinnah, and had exchanged certain proposals.

The SHC observed that a provincial law officer had taken note of the contention that the parties were now moving towards the implementation of the wishes of Fatima Jinnah, as translated through the trust deed, in which it was desired that the premises of Qasr-e-Fatima would be used for the establishment of a modern medical college exclusively for girls with an attached hospital for free treatment of poor persons.

The high court directed the provincial law officer to go through the various orders of the court and file a statement as to what assistance could be provided by his office to achieve the ends of using the said property as per the desires of Fatima Jinnah and Shireen Jinnah.

The SHC directed the Nazir of the court to submit a report with regard to the sums received by him on various dates and the investment thereof in the government securities and the profit accrued thereon till date.

The Nazir had earlier informed the court that the principle profit accrued on defence saving certificates (DSC) was Rs608,500 till November 2, 2004, and special saving certificates (SSC) was Rs399,959,500 till January 16, 2013. The Nazir’s report that was submitted on September 30, 2015, had stated that profit on the DSC for the period of 10 years and on the SSC for the period of two-and-a-half years was due.

It is pertinent to mention that the high court, in a previous order, had granted the request of the plaintiff’s counsel with regard to calling the property as Qasr-e-Fatima instead of Mohatta Palace in government documents.

The high court had ordered the provincial government and other defendants to ensure that the said property continued to be named, tagged, labelled and described as Qasr-e-Fatima only and all the documents wherein any other name was used to describe the said property should be corrected.

Plea against vaccination

Recently, the SHC dismissed a petition against 5G (fifth generation) technology and Covid-19 vaccination drive in the country.

The high court observed that the petitioner who was appearing in person had not uttered a single word as to how the consequences of 5G technology, wherefrom the entire world was benefitting and/or intended to seek benefits, could be a health hazard.

The SHC observed that as far as Covid-19 was concerned, the petitioner perhaps was not even remotely aware of the consequences of the disease that started to spread in 2019 and was yet to be controlled. The high court observed that there were international and national policies which are being towed by different departments of the federal and provincial governments.

The high court dismissed the petition with a cost of Rs25,000, which was directed to be deposited in the high court clinic within two weeks.