ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) sought comments from the federation in a plea challenging the appointment of Dr Muhammad Aslam as chief executive officer (CEO) of Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP).
The case heard by a single-judge bench of Justice Athar Minnallah also issued notices to the respondents in the petition filed by Mirza Abdul Rehman. The counsel for the petitioner Ali Nawaz Kharal argued that the appointment notification of Aslam was an impugned notification as the appointment was done while violating the legislature behind the specific wording of Section 5 of DRAP Act. He further pleaded that the appointment of Aslam was based on extraneous considerations, in violation of section 5 and article 4 and 18 of the constitution, therefore liable to be struck down as being illegal and void ab-initio, he added.
Kharal apprised the bench that the respondent was at a very senior managerial and controlling position in a Japanese pharmaceutical company, Otsuka Pvt Ltd, which is a wholly owned and controlled company of M/s Otsuka Japan and thus has obvious conflict of interest and cannot be expected to perform his services without being influenced by the interests of this particular concern and the interests of foreign manufacturers and importers of drugs. He alleged that the whole exercise of appointment of Dr Muhammad Aslam had been undertaken in such way which manifests that the same was tailor made for the person specific appointment of Dr Aslam as CEO of DRAP. He prayed before the bench to declare the appointment as illegal and unlawful from ab-initio. The bench while issuing notices to the Establishment
Division secretary, Secretary of Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, Pakistan Secretariat, DRAP and Dr Muhammad Aslam, CEO DRAP, respondents and directed them to submit comments over the matter within two weeks, adjourning the case to re-list it.