LAHORE: Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi of Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday – after conclusion of arguments – deferred till first week of January the hearing a petition challenging appointment of 12 MPAs to five public sector companies. Judge also sought assistance of another jurist Mansoor Usman Awan. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader in Punjab Assembly Mian Mehmoodur Rasheed had moved the petition. The petitioner submitted that MPA Ramazan Siddique Bhatti had been appointed as a director of the Lahore Transport Company; MPAs Nasreen Nawaz, Ramzan Siddique Bhatti, and Kiran Dar as directors of Lahore Parking Company; MPAs Kashif Padhiar, Amanullah Khan, Qazi Adnan Fareed, Rana Baber Hussain, Ch Lal Hussain, Mahmood Qadir Khan, Qamarul Islam and Waheed Gull as directors of Punjab Saaf Pani Company; MPA Majid Zahoor as director of the Lahore Waste Management Company; while MPA Hussain Jahania Gardezi of the Punjab Agriculture and Meat Company. He submitted that these five companies were incorporated under Section 42 of the Companies Ordinance 1984 and these companies are owned by the Punjab government, which are regulated under the Public Sector Companies Corporate Governance Rules 2013. He said that these MPAs appointment to five different public sector companies was violation of Section 3(7) of Public Sector Companies Corporate Government Rules 2013. Under the law, he said that no person having a political or legislative role could become a director of a company governed by Public Sector Companies Corporate Governance Rules 2013. He said that the appointment of these MPAs was illegal and was a case of political interference and conflict of interest. He said the government was responsible for managing the affairs of these companies on a transparent and fair basis. However, he said by appointing sitting MPAs to the board of directors it had indulged in malpractice. He requested the court to issue directives to authorities concerned to implement the Public Sector Companies Corporate Governance Rules 2013, which do not allow any legislator to work as a director. He also requested the court to abstain the Law Ministry, the Punjab chief secretary and companies from appointing any member having a political or any legislative role, and also to declare the exercise of authority by these MPAs as directors illegal, null and void. In its reply, the government stated that no violation of rules was committed. The rules of Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) do not apply to the legislators working as directors with public sector companies on voluntarily basis, because the companies fall under the provincial government. The SECP had submitted that two MPAs were directors of parking companies and there appointment had already been declared illegal. Ramzan Siddique Bhatti, and Kiran Dar are working as directors of Lahore Parking Company. On behalf of the SECP it was stated that both MPAs concealed their political affiliation in order to get their appointment as directors. The SECP stated that rules of the commission do not allow any elected member of parliament to be office holder of any public sector company. The appointment of MPAs as directors was unlawful under Section 3(7) of Public Sector Corporate Governance Rules 2013, the counsel said.