ISLAMABAD: A three-member Supreme Court bench on Wednesday declined to grant
a stay order on leasing of the Reko Diq gold mines in Balochistan, worth over $260 billion, to foreign exploration companies.The bench comprising Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Ghulam Rabbani and Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday was hearing a petition against leasing out Reko Diq gold and copper mines in Balochistan to foreign companies by the federal government.
The court also decided to club all identical petitions on the issue by Barrister Zafarullah and others with the main petition moved by Tariq Asad advocate and adjourned further hearing until December 15. Appearing on notice, the Balochistan advocate general and deputy advocate general told the SC that there was no such contract in the field.
“Since both high officials of the government have given statements over the issue, therefore it will be premature to grant any sort of stay,” the court observed. At the last hearing, the court had issued notices to all those made respondents in Tariq’s plea, who had claimed that the contracts of gold and copper mines at Reko Diq were awarded to foreign companies at throwaway prices.He requested the court to direct the federation not to sell mineral deposits of gold and copper in Balochistan – Pakistantoday