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Wednesday, April 27, 2022

IHC orders action against FIA officials involved in arresting Lahore journalists

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IHC was hearing a case pertaining to unnecessary use of authority by the FIA officials under cybercrime laws.
  • IHC orders action against FIA officials for “unnecessary use of authority.
  • Action against the FIA officials should be “exemplary”, says CJ Minallah.
  • Says “blocking all ways to express opinions would result in violence.”

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Wednesday directed authorities to taken action against the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials involved in the arrest of two journalists in Lahore.

A bench, headed by IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah, was hearing a case pertaining to “unnecessary use of authority” by the FIA officials under cybercrime laws.

At the outset of the hearing, CJ Minallah inquired about the progress made in the case after the last hearing in Lahore, saying the FIA committed contempt against Lahore’s court.

“Don’t the standard operating procedures made on the judicial order apply to Lahore FIA,” he questioned.

At the CJ’s inquiry, the additional attorney-general maintained that the FIA officials must undergo legal action if they violated the procedure.

“What FIA is doing is not a good trend for the future,” remarked CJ Minallah.

The CJ inquired why were the FIA officials bothering the journalists for speaking against the government or any other entity.

“It would result in violence if all the ways to express opinions are blocked,” he remarked.

Directing the authorities to take action against the FIA officials, the court adjourned the hearing till September 27.

FIA takes Lahore journalists into custody

The FIA took journalists Amir Mir and Imran Shafqat into custody on August 7, 2021. Both journalists were later released after the two submitted a personal surety bond.

However, a First Information Report (FIR) has been registered against the two journalists by the FIA, who said that the journalists were booked for allegedly defaming honourable judges, the Pakistan Army, and disrespecting women.

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