SHC orders setting up of girls medical college at Mohatta Palace

The Sindh High Court ruled on Wednesday that Qasr-e-Fatima, also known as Mohatta Palace, will be used to establish a medical and dental college for girls.

The order was issued in response to a long-running dispute over the late Fatima Jinnah’s heritage property in Clifton.

Both the plaintiffs and defendants agreed to an amicable resolution of the dispute and gave their consent to establish the medical and dental college, according to a single-judge bench of the SHC led by Justice Zulfiqar Ahmad Khan.

Both sides recommended the names of some retired judges, prominent doctors, and relatives of late Miss Jinnah to be part of a trust to run the proposed medical college. The matter was adjourned until November 1st.

The fate of the government-funded Mohatta Palace Museum, on the other hand, is unknown.

Miss Jinnah’s moveable and immovable properties, including Qasr-e-Fatima, were the subject of a lawsuit filed in 1971 by Hussain Waliji, a relative of Miss Jinnah.

Following Mr Waliji’s death, his son Amir Ali was named as the plaintiff, but he died during the course of the case, and his legal heirs were added to the proceedings.

After Fatima Jinnah’s death on July 10, 1967, a succession certificate of such properties was awarded to Shireen Jinnah, Fatima Jinnah’s only surviving sister. One of the defendants in the lawsuit was the Shireen Jinnah Charitable Trust.

At the previous hearing, lawyers for both sides — Fatima Jinnah’s relatives (plaintiffs) and the Shireen Jinnah Charitable Trust (defendants) — informed the bench that they had considered the matter and were progressing toward an amicable resolution of the long-running dispute over Miss Jinnah’s property, and had exchanged certain proposals.

A provincial law officer also stated that both sides were now working to carry out late Miss Jinnah’s wishes, as expressed in the trust deed, which stated that the Qasr-e-Fatima premises would be used to establish a modern medical college exclusively for girls, as well as an attached hospital for free treatment of underprivileged persons/patients.

Following that, the bench directed the provincial law officer to review the court’s various orders and file a statement outlining what assistance could be provided to achieve the goals of using the property in question in accordance with the wishes of its owners, Fatima and Shireen Jinnah.

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