A Pakistani court has dismissed 70 petitions challenging the government's new Haj policy and the allocation of quotas for Haj group organisers, citing an agreement between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia in this regard.
Dismissing the petitions, Justice Ijaz Chaudhry of the Lahore High Court observed that the court could not pass orders against a contract between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia as a joint secretary of the Ministry of Religious Affairs had admitted on oath that the policy was evolved totally in the light of a contract between the two countries.
The petitions were filed by dozens of Haj group organisers. The petitioners had asked the court to declare the Haj policy illegal as it was based on "favouritism and nepotism."
Muhammad Azhar Siddique, the counsel for the petitioners, said they would challenge the High Court’s order in the Supreme Court.
He said the apex court had directed the Ministry of Religious Affairs to entertain the applications of the petitioners before allocating quotas under the new Haj policy.
He contended the ministry had violated the Supreme Court’s order.