Pakistan’s top judge said that the administration of the Pakistan State Oil has destroyed the institution.
The Supreme Court was hearing a case on tax on petroleum products on Friday.
“Why is there so much tax on petroleum?” Chief Justice Saqib Nisar asked.
The national oil authority’s lawyer said that it pays 27% tax on petrol. “The institution has no control over the prices. The government even decides the commission given to dealers.”
“If the market forces are deciding the prices, then what are the highly paid officials doing?” the top judge questioned.
Chief Justice Nisar then asked about PSO’s managing director. “Where is the head who is paid Rs3.7 million?”
The defence lawyer told him that the head has retired.
The top judge then expressed his anger over a public institution hiring private lawyers.
The court ordered the oil company to submit reply over its audit report, and sought a report on appointments and LNG agreements.
Petroleum Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan appeared in court. The court ordered him to stop the culture of misusing authority. He was asked to review the appointments made in PSO.
The chief justice also came down hard on the National Accountability Bureau. “The bureau is doing nothing except for appearing in court. Will the court have to clean up bureau’s mess as well?”
He said that the accountability bureau in engaging in a conspiracy to stop cases from reaching their logical conclusion.
The next hearing will be held on October 10.