ISLAMABAD-The Islamabad High Court on Tuesday issued notices to the respondents in a petition challenging the appointment of Zulfi Bukhari as Chairman Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) and establishment of National Tourism Coordination Board (NTCB).

A single bench of IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq conducted hearing of the petition moved by Arif Mehmood Shah and 14 other PTDC employees and directed the respondents to submit their replies within 14 days in this matter.

The petitioners moved the petition through Hafiz Arfat Ahmad Chaudhary Advocate and cited Secretary Cabinet Division, Secretary Cabinet Division, Secretary Establishment Division, Zulfiqar Bukhari Special Assistant to the Prime Minister of Pakistan on Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development and Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) as respondents.

They adopted in the petition that the petitioners who are regular employees of Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation call in question the establishment of NTCB through an executive notification dated 12-03-2019 issued by the Secretary Cabinet in sheer violation of the Constitution 18th Amendment Act, 2010 and the unlawful interference of NTCB in the affairs of PTDC which being a juridical person can be run only through its Board constituted under the Companies Act, 2017.

The petitioners also assailed successive notifications issued by the Establishment Division whereby the said Division bypassing the provisions and procedure laid down in the Public Sector Companies (Corporate Governance) Rules, 2013 and the Public Sector Companies (Appointment of Chief Executive) Guidelines, 2015 and the law laid down by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, has appointed a BS-19 civil servant of Secretariat Group as Managing Director PTDC on current charge basis.

They further challenged the appointment of respondent No 4 (Zulfi Bukhari) as Chairman PTDC Board as the said appointment has been made in violation of the 2017 Act and rules made thereunder and the PTDC’s Memorandum and Articles of Association.

Therefore, they prayed to the court to declare that the said notification dated 12-03-2019 whereby the NTCB has been constituted is illegal, unlawful and violative of the spirit of the 18th Amendment Act, 2010 and declare that all decisions made, orders passed and instructions issued by the NTCB in its successive meetings are unlawful, unwarranted and void ab initio.

They also requested the court to declare that the notification dated 07-05-2019 and all subsequent notifications through which a BS-19 officer of the Secretariat Group was appointed as Managing Director of PTDC is illegal, unlawful and the same may very graciously be set aside.

The petitioners further requested to declare that the appointment of Zulfiqar Bukhari as Chairman Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation Board directly by the federal government is illegal and unlawful and the said decision of the federal government may very kindly be set aside and declare.