The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Monday allowed counsel for Raja Pervez Ashraf, former minister for water and power and the incumbent Prime Minister, to withdraw a plea seeking review of March 30, 2012 verdict on the Rental Power Plants (RPPs) case.
While the bench also took up a set of other review appeals moved by a number of RPPs.
The bench issued notice to Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) after hearing contentions of Abdul Hafeez Pirzada, the counsel for Kamokey Power Plant Limited.
The counsel said that Kamokey was the only company that had come to the Court to be heard on grievances for not getting a release of $10million advance payment.
He said that the original project was of 50 mega watts of power while they offered production of 70 mega watts of electricity.
To bench's query, he said that the issue of site was irrelevant as the power generated by the company would have to be added to the national grid.
Referring to the submission of documents, he said that they participated in the bidding process which was in accordance with the international standards.
He said under the process, five parties participated and the concerned authorities sent the tariff issue to NEPRA.
The advance payment of 7 per cent amounting to $10 million had been stopped by the authorities and they had not been releasing it, whereas the company had also spent Rs1.5 billion, he added.
Pirzada argued that from the documents, it was evident that the commercial operating date had not arrived in his case.
He said the authorities of PEPCO had been telling them to go to the court for release of the amount.
Representing Raishma Power Plant, Pirzada maintained that it was the company which had went for international bidding.
The Chief Justice told him that the transaction could not be termed as transparent because 'there were glaring examples of ommission and commission'.
The counsel requested the bench to defer proceedings as he wanted to seek further instructions from CEO Raishma Faisal Afridi who had to leave the court on account of food poisoning.
The Chief Justice also observed that it was not its mandate to frame policies and run the government.
Khawja Tariq Rahim, counsel for PEPCO, requested the bench to adjourn hearing of Raishma, Gulf and other RPPs cases as he wanted to seek instructions from the Federation over the issue and suggested that these reviews should be heard along with the pleas moved by Federation, and the bench acceding to his request granted him time till February 18.
Barrister Ali Raza, counsel for Gulf Rental Plant, contended that his client had been in the list of 19 RPPs but it was a solicited project which had commenced its function by generating power.
He said that it was not his fault to enter into a bid process as the framing of policies was the job of government and he could not be punished on account of such policies.
The CJ told him that being a bidder, he would have to face the consequences as there was no policy.
"How NEPRA was assessing the reserve price in advance!" he queried.
The counsel said that he wanted that justice should be done with the company as plant worth millions of rupees had been lying there.
He apprised the bench that his client also wanted to move the plant outside Pakistan to which the CJ replied that when he was not interested in the project, he could move his application before the concerned quarters.
The bench granted him time for further preparation and adjourned hearing till February 18.
On March 30, 2012, the verdict authored by the Chief Justice of Pakistan had declared all the RPPs contracts illegal and non-transparent and directed the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman to proceed against all the persons in accordance with law.