ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court Friday issued notices to parties on an appeal filed against the verdict of the Lahore High Court banning the broadcast and print media from showing the image and speeches of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain till further orders.
Former president Supreme Court Bar Association Asma Jahangir has challenged the LHC decision of 7 September, 2015 urging the apex court to declare the LHC decision null and void on grounds that MQM counsel were not given a chance to plead the case.
Resuming the proceedings, a two-member bench led by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan issued notices to parties to the case to ascertain effectiveness status of the ban imposed by the LHC as the court observed the interim order would have automatically become infructuous after 15 days.
Turning down another plea in the same matter seeking transfer of the MQM chief’s case from the LHC to Sindh High Court the bench remarked that mere rumours are not proper justification to transfer a case from one High Court to another or else every second petitioner will request the court to transfer his case from one court to another.
Justice Qazi Faiz Isa stated that Article 19 of the Constitution is meant for Pakistani citizens and pointed out that the LHC has sought a response from the concerned authorities about the nationality of MQM chief Altaf Hussain in the current matter.
Article 19 of the constitution states: “Every citizen shall have the right to freedom of speech and expression, and there shall be freedom of the press, subject to any reasonable restrictions imposed by law in the interest of the glory of Islam or the integrity, security or defence of Pakistan or any part thereof, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality, or in relation to contempt of court, 1[commission of] or incitement to an offence”. Later, hearing was adjourned till November 03.
Source: Business Recorder