Asad Ladha

LL.B. (Hons), King’s College London
LL.M., University of Leiden
Bar Vocational Course (BVC), BPP Law School (London)

Advocate High Court, Pakistan
Barrister at Law, Lincoln’s Inn (2009)

Asad Ladha is an Advocate of the High Court of Pakistan and was called to the Bar (Lincoln’s Inn) in 2009. After the completion of his legal studies Asad practiced as a litigation lawyer in London, UK. In addition, Asad has also acted as a Legal Adviser to the Ministry of Justice, UK.

Asad has built up considerable expertise in corporate and commercial litigation. He regularly appears before, and has represented, a number of regulatory bodies including the Institution of Chartered Accountants Pakistan (ICAP), the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP). In addition, Asad has a developed an emerging Tax practice with a particular focus on the tax implications of energy projects being developed by foreign companies within Pakistan.

Asad also routinely acts for a number of Chinese companies with respect to their operations in Pakistan. He currently represents the biggest clean energy group in China both in contentious and non-contentious matters. In addition, Asad currently acts for a major Chinese oil and gas development company in a substantial tax dispute with the Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) arising out of an EPCC Contract for an LPG Processing Plant in Pakistan.

Litigation Practice

Since his return to Pakistan, Asad has developed a litigation practice encompassing diverse Commercial, Constitutional and Administrative Law disputes as well as representing clients in litigation relating to Regulatory Affairs, Company Law and Tax. Within his Commercial practice, Asad has represented clients from a number of industries including Banking, Cement, Food and Beverage, Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals, Telecommunications and Textiles.

The following is a list of notable cases that Asad has been involved in:

  • Represented a real estate development company in the Islamabad High Court challenging the validity of an order served by the SECP authorising the inspection of the books of account of the company
  • Acted for the Pharma Bureau, an association of multi-national pharmaceutical companies before the Competition Commission of Pakistan
  • Represented a large fertilizer manufacturer in a writ petition filed before the Peshawar High Court challenging the legality of a notification on the grounds of discrimination in the grant of fertilizer subsidies
  • Currently representing two individuals in the first ever litigation initiated by the SECP under the new Section 496 (Serious Fraud) of the Companies Act, 2017 before the Special Court (Banking Offences), Islamabad
  • Acted for the ICAP in an appeal before the Competition Appellate Tribunal (CAT) in relation to the exclusion of students from other institutions within ICAP
  • Represented the Chairperson of the National Commission on the Status of Women in a writ petition before the Islamabad High Court challenging her appointment for a second term
  • Represented PEMRA in a number of cases including, including inter alia:
    • A writ petition filed by private radio broadcasters alleging discriminatory treatment as against national radio broadcasters
    • A writ petition filed by private radio broadcasters challenging the renewal fees charged by PEMRA for private radio licences
    • A writ petition challenging the legality of a restriction contained within the PEMRA Ordinance and Rules prohibiting broadcasters from obtaining distribution licences for the new Direct-to-Home (DTH) service being introduced in Pakistan for the first time
  • Acted on behalf of a major bank in a challenge to Section 15 of the Financial Institutions (Recovery of Finances) (Amendment) Act, 2016 relating to the sale of mortgaged property in the case of default by a customer
  • Represented a Grade 20 officer of the Civil Service in a writ petition before the Islamabad High Court challenging the deferment of his promotion to Grade 21
  • Represented the CEO of a major private hospital in Islamabad in a writ petition before the Islamabad High Court challenging the jurisdiction of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB)
  • Represented a beverage manufacturer in an intellectual property suit alleging breach of trade mark, initiated by one of the largest multi-national drinks manufacturer
  • Represented one of the renowned industrial groups of Pakistan before the PEMRA Council of Complaints (COC) in a complaint made against a well-known television channel for airing false and defamatory remarks against the company

Asad also assists Senior Partner Mr. Salman Akram Raja with litigation in the Supreme Court of Pakistan and has been involved in the following notable cases:

  • Imran Ahmad Khan Niazi v Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, Prime Minister of Pakistan, PLD 2017 SC 265
  • Workers’ Welfare Funds v East Pakistan Chrome Tannery (PVT) Ltd, PLD 2017 SC 28
  • Suo Motu case in relation to the quality of both UHT and Pasteurized Milk
  • Acted on behalf of a large pharmaceutical company in an appeal to the Supreme Court challenging the judgment of a division bench of the Sindh High Court concerning the Maximum Retail Price (MRP) that can be charged for originator brand drugs

Non-contentious/Advisory Practice

Asad regularly advises companies from major industries. He currently represents the largest trade organisation in Pakistan. In addition, he has previously advised a large business conglomerate on the tax implications of a Sponsorship Agreement with a major sports team; a major Chinese construction company in relation to an EPCC contract for the construction of a major LPG processing plant and a major ride hailing service with respect to a tax dispute in the province of KPK.

U.K. Litigation Experience

During the course of his litigation practice in London, Asad was involved in the following notable cases:

  • Successfully represented a number of Residential Management Companies in service charge disputes with tenants
  • Represented a number of London Boroughs in Council Tax, Rent Arrears and Disrepair disputes with tenants
  • Acted for several well-known car finance houses in financial disputes with customers
  • Represented a number of high profile car manufacturers in disputes regarding after sales care and manufacturing faults with vehicles
  • Acted on behalf of several major high street banks and finance houses in disputes relating to mortgages and alleged financial irregularities
  • Represented a number of large private schools from around the country in cases involving contractual disputes over non-payment of fees
  • Conducted litigation on behalf of several NHS Trusts in relation to non-payment of hospital fees by those deemed to be non-nationals under immigration rules

Asad has served as an Editor of the prestigious International Organisations Law Review published from the Netherlands. He has also contributed to the book titled “International Institutional Law” (Martinus Nijhoff Publishers). Asad has previously been a member of the visiting faculty at The Institute of Legal Studies (TILS), Lahore where he lectured in Human Rights and Public Law.

Asad heads the Islamabad office of the firm.