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LAHORE: The famous 81-year-old Pak Tea House, situated near Lahore’s Anarkali Bazaar, has finally reopened, some eight-and-a-half months after the Lahore High Court had vacated a stay order granted earlier to bar the Punjab government from reviving this historic place.
On June 19, 2012, a bench comprising Justice Ijaz Ahmad and Justice Mamoon Rasheed Sheikh had delivered this verdict while dismissing an intra-court appeal filed against the February 16, 2012 order of Lahore High Court Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, who had dismissed petitioner Zahid Hussain’s intra-court appeal.
Justice Umar Ata Bandial had observed in his February 16, 2012 order that the Pak Tea House could not be closed as it had regularly been visited by authors, writers, intellectuals, classical ghazal maestros and poets of yore for decades, and hence had a lot of history attached to it.
Zahid Hussain, the petitioner, had prayed before the court to bar the Punjab government from reopening Pak Tea House at the property on Lahore’s famous Mall Road, which was leased to his father in 1947.
Earlier, on February 2, 2012, on the orders of the Lahore Commissioner, the City District Government had forcibly got the cafe vacated.
It had been illegally turned into a cloth storage facility and the government had placed it under the control of the Young Men’s Christian Association. where meetings of Halqa-i-Arbab-e-Zouq were held from 1960 to the early 1970s.