A Pakistan court has cited a law against land grabbing in force in Andhra Pradesh in India and asked the government to study it as a model for providing justice to those dispossessed of their land.
A full bench of the Lahore High Court on Friday recommended to the federal Justice Ministry to examine the Andhra Pradesh Land Grabbing (Prohibition) Act, 1982, to suitably mould or recast the Illegal Dispossession Act, 2005.
Justices Asif Khosa, Shabbar Raza Rizvi and Tariq Shamim observed that the Illegal Dispossession Act, 2005, was not the finest example of legislative draftsmanship because it did not provide any right to appeal to a convict.
The bench declared the right to appeal an Islamic right.
The bench observed that the Pakistani law contemplates probe by police without involving revenue authorities. In most of the cases, the revenue authorities are more relevant than the police, the bench held.
The bench made these recommendations while setting aside the conviction of five people under this act.
The bench held that this act was restricted in its scope and was applicable to only those cases where a dispossession from immovable property had allegedly come about through a group of persons having the credentials or antecedents of property grabbers or land mafia.
The bench held that the sessions court while trying anybody under this act should satisfy that the accused had the credential of property grabbers.