In this case, the plaintiffs were mine workers of Khewra. They alleged that the director of the industries and mineral development ministry of the government of the Punjab had granted mining licences which resulted into the reduction of the water catchment area used as a water supply source by the residents and the worker of the mine. As a result, the water resources got polluted by the water waste coming out of the mines, exposing the residents to health hazards.
The plaintiff petitioned the court to close the mines that are within the water catchment area. They argued that during the history of the mines, the water catchment had always been preserved from mining exploitation. They also pointed out that the pollution of the river presented for them a breach of their right to life guaranteed by Article 9 of the Constitution because they live in areas where access to water is scarce, and the right to water free from pollution is for them equivalent to the right to life. The first instance court and the Court of Appeal Court both confirmed the order of the Licensing Authority and added some restrictions and safeguard to it.
The plaintiff appealed the decision in front of the Supreme Court. The judges of the Supreme Court held that there was a violation of the residents rights to life and ordered the mining company exploiting the mine to shift the location of the mouth of the mine and to take measures to prevent pollution of the water springs in the water catchment. At the same time the Court forbad the Licensing Authority to grant licenses in the water catchment area.