Lahore High Court bans airing of anti-judiciary speeches by Nawaz Sharif

Frederick Owens
April 17, 2018

A petitioner, Amina Malik, told the court that Sharif, his daughter Maryam, son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar, Interior Minister Talal Chaudhry and Punjab law minister Rana Sanaullah verbally attacked the Supreme Court judges in a rally in Jaranwala (some 150-km from Lahore) for disqualifying Sharif from the office of prime minister.

A day after the Lahore High Court (LHC) passed a judgement temporarily banning "anti-judiciary" speeches by former Nawaz Sharif and others, the Supreme Court on Tuesday took suo motu notice on the verdict passed by the lower court.

"So the court's decision is correct, but it will still be hard to implement".

"You may be the first person to actually read this decision", the chief justice replied, adding that all media outlets took the LHC's decision out of context and said that the court had banned speeches by Nawaz and Maryam, "which is not the case, where in the verdict does it say that speeches [from the two leaders] have been banned?"

When the court asked the regulatory body why it had dismissed the petitions, Pemra's counsel Salman Akram Raja said the allegations against the government agency were baseless.

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Accountability court judge Mohammad Bashir resumed hearing of the corruption reference filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in the light of the Panamagate verdict.

"[Judiciary] suffered an attack earlier while second attack was launched by airing fake news", remarked CJP.

The PML-N leaders were served notices by the court to appear in person or by counsel today.

A three-member bench headed by Justice Mazahir Ali Naqvi also directed PEMRA to decide all pending complaints regarding the alleged contemptuous speeches within 15 days and devise a framework. In this regard notices has been issued to Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) while record of the suo motu notice has also been sought.

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