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SHC rejects petition challenging Hafeez’s appointment as PM’s adviser on finance

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Thursday rejected a petition challenging the appointment of Dr Abdul Hafeez Shiekh and Raza Baqir as PM’s Adviser on Finance and Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) respectively.

A bench of the high court dismissed the petition for being non-maintainable.

Citing the federal government, Dr Sheikh, Governor SBP Raza Baqir and others as respondents, the petitioner stated that the appointment of Raza Baqir as SBP governor and Abdul Hafeez Sheikh as PM’s adviser is violation of various articles of the constitution.

He, therefore, pleaded with the court to declare their appointments as illegal.

It is noteworthy that Prime Minister Imran Khan carried out a major shakeup in the PTI government last month, appointing Dr Sheikh as his adviser on finance.

Asad Umar, a PTI MNA from Islamabad, stepped down as the country’s finance minister after PM Imran asked him to take the portfolio of petroleum, which he declined and opted to quit the federal cabinet.

Subsequently, the government named Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, a former World Bank official who served as finance minister from 2010-2013, as adviser on finance, replacing Umar.

Pre-budget reshuffle also saw Reza Baqir, International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission chief for Egypt, being appointed as SBP governor and Syed Shabbar Zaidi as chairman of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

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