Pakistan: Nawaz Sharif can now address; Islamabad court said this

Nawaz Sharif has been in discussions for a longer time. The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday rejected a request asking prohibition on Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif’s addresses, reported a leading daily. The petition stated that Sharif has started actively participating in politics and has initiated a smear campaign against state institutions, after going abroad on the pretext of availing medical treatment. It requested the court to order that Sharif’s recent “hate speeches” be taken down from the internet and that he should be outlawed from delivering speeches in the future.

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The case was heard by IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah. The high court in its decision said that it was not in the public interest to summon the “constitutional jurisdiction of a high court in matters involving political content”, especially in cases where the law provides “alternative remedies”. The verdict read, “The people of Pakistan, through their chosen representatives, have the will and resolve to safeguard the security of Pakistan. The security of Pakistan is surely not dependent on the issuance of a writ by this court.” 

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The IHC verdict, which was reserved earlier on Monday, said that the applicant contended that the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) had forbidden speeches delivered by individuals who were declared as absconders in a case. The petitioner had also expressed concern that the country’s security was being “threatened”, the five-page verdict noted. The court, however, dismissed this argument in its ruling, saying that “the security of Pakistan is not frail nor can be threatened by mere political rhetoric”. 

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