Friday April 08, 2022

IHC Reserves Judgment on PECA Ordinance

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday has reserved its judgment on the petitions filed against the Pakistan Electronic Crimes Act (PECA) ordinance.

According to details, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials have submitted a report to the IHC.

The Chief Justice of Islamabad High Court questioned that the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) have been submitted to the court and the same were trampled.

The Chief Justice further asked that is it included in the job description of the FIA officials that they have the right to monitor the journalists.

Earlier during the hearing regarding this case, Attorney General of Pakistan Khalid Javed said that he cannot defend section 20 of PECA Ordinance.

IHC held hearing on pleas against PECA Ordinance. Attorney General informed the court that government has stopped implementation of section 20 of the ordinance and has decided to consult all stakeholders in this regard.

Khalid Javed further said that when he apprised the Prime Minister Imran Khan about section 20, the premier said “How did this happen?”

Meanwhile Chief Justice of IHC Athar Minallah remarked that if defamation is turned into criminal cases, all politicians as well as vloggers will be in jail.

It merits mention here that IHC conducted hearing on a plea against Prevention from Electronic Crime Act (PECA) Amendment Ordinance 2022.

During the proceedings, IHC CJ Athar Minallah remarked that here the law is enforced against the critics. PM Imran Khan’s address showed that he was miscommunicated on the issue, he added.

IHC had declared PECA Amendment Ordinance 2022 as ‘draconian law’.

While hearing petitions filed against FIA for exceeding from its authorities, the court remarked, “You are doing self-censorship through this law.”

Athar Minallah also said that non-implementation on already devised SOPs is the worst thing, asking that whether FIA has any other duty instead of saving the nationalities of the people.

The CJ said that whenever an ordinance is prepared, it has to get green signal from both the Houses over which, Attorney General said that the approval can be taken from even one House.

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