KARACHI: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday sought a comprehensive project report from Sindh government regarding alternate transport to replace Qingqi rickshaws.
The SC bench comprising Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Maqbool Baqar questioned the Additional Attorney General (AAG) Sindh that when there was no alternate transport why the government approached SHC and requested to ban it.
Qingqi rickshaws were restricted to ply in limited areas but they started running on main roads as well as Superhighway. These rickshaws were violating Motor Vehicle Rules 1969, AAG submitted before the court. The court remarked that if there was something wrong it should have been rectified.
The court observed that minibuses plying on the city roads were also in dilapidated condition. “Sindh Government is spending money on unnecessary projects but public transport issue has yet to attract its attention; affordable public transport has vanished in the metropolis,” the bench remarked.
The court directed Secretary Transport to hold a meeting with association of Qingqi and other relevant departments to make a comprehensive plan for alternate public transport. The court directed the secretary to submit the report on Thursday (today). The apex court was hearing a civil petition for leave to appeal to set aside the SHC order banning the three-wheelers motor cycle rickshaws better known as Qingqi rickshaws.
Advocate Ghulam Qadir Jatoi and Advocate Syed Abdul Waheed had filed the petition on behalf of Altaf Raza, President of the Association for the Welfare of Owners and Staff of Qingqi, Sindh. Altaf Raza challenged the judgment of SHC and submitted that families of rickshaws’ drivers were facing hardship due to the ban. Citing Sindh government through the transport secretary; excise and taxation secretary, regional transport authority secretary and the deputy inspector general of traffic police as respondents, the association pleaded the court to declare the impugned order of the high court null and void.
They requested the apex court to allow them to plying of Qingqi rickshaws on the roads. The Sindh High Court (SHC) on 5th August imposed ban on Qingqi rickshaws operating without route permits and other necessary documentations on main roads of Karachi and other parts of Sindh. SHC had also directed traffic police and transport authorities to take action against chingchi rickshaws.