ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi promulgated the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Amendment (PECA) Ordinance 2022 and Election Act (Amendment) Ordinance on Sunday.
According to media reports, in the PECA Amendment Ordinance issued by the President, the definition of a person has been included any company, association, institution or authority. Section 20 of the ordinance has been amended to increase the sentence from 3 years to 5 years in case of attack on the identity of any person.
The person filing the complaint will be the aggrieved party, his representative or guardian, the offence has been declared admissible and it will be non-bailable, media reported. The trial court will decide the case within six months and will submit the details of the case to the high court every month.
In this regard, if the High Court feels that there are hindrances in the way of speedy disposal of the case, it will direct the federal and provincial governments to remove them. The Chief Justice of each High Court will nominate a judge and officers for these cases, as per Ordinance.
NNI adds: Earlier, Federal Law Minister Farogh Naseem on Sunday announced that Ordinances regarding the election code of conduct and Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (Peca) have been enforced and the people who spread fake news can now be sent to prison for up to five years.
Addressing a news conference here, Farogh Naseem declared that there would be no exemption for the fake news spreaders. “Their cases will be concluded within six months and they cannot apply for bail. The judge will also face action if he cannot satisfy the high court about the delay in the case,” he added.
The law minister said this law, necessary to deal with the fake news, was not in conflict with the Constitution. The media can criticize the government as hard as it wants to but there should be no fake news, he added.
The minister said the Ordinance regarding amendment to Election Act has been formulated by Dr Babar Awan, while amendments to the PECA have been drafted by him.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022