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The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has decided to withdraw its review petition against the Supreme Court’s verdict on the 2017 sit-in by the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) at Faizabad in Islamabad, Aaj News reported on Wednesday.

The development comes a day after the Intelligence Bureau (IB) withdrew its review plea against the same judgement.

The withdrawal application by Pemra came just a day before the hearing of the review petitions.

A three-member bench led by Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa and comprising Justice Aminuddin Khan and Justice Athar Minallah will hear the petitions on September 28.

SC rejects PEMRA, ISI and ECP’s reports on Faizabad Dharna case

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), the Ministry of Defence, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), former interior minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, and politician Ejazul Haq are among the other petitioners.

The defense ministry, army, navy, and air force chiefs had been ordered by the judgment to discipline any members of their command who were found to have violated the terms of their oath.

It may be noted that the review petitions were not taken up during the tenures of the last three chief justices, namely, Asif Saeed Khosa, Gulzar Ahmed, and Umar Ata Bandial.

Faizabad ‘Dharna’

In November 2017, political parties including Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah (TLY) protested and held a sit-in for nearly three weeks at Islamabad’s Faizabad Interchange.

They were protesting against a reversed change in the Khatm-i-Nabuwwat oath in the Elections Act 2017. The protesters demanded the resignation of then Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid.

Authorities seal Islamabad, Pindi to stop TLP ’s march

In order to disperse the huge number of protesters, Islamabad police, with the help of Frontier Corps personnel and Rangers, launched an operation and used tear gas shells and rubber bullets. In retaliation, the protesters resorted to throwing stones at the security forces. Several people were injured while at least six people were killed during the clash.

The protest came to an end after the protesting parties and government reached an agreement. One of the agreement included the resignation of Hamid, which he later tendered.

The verdict

Justice Isa, in his 2019 Faizabad dharna judgment, has written that the Constitution emphatically prohibited members of the armed forces from engaging in any kind of political activity, which included supporting a political party, faction or individual.

“The government of Pakistan through the Ministry of Defence and the respective chiefs of the army, the navy and the air force are directed to initiate action against the personnel under their command who are found to have violated their oath,” read the 43-page verdict authored by the incumbent CJP Isa.

Faizabad sit-in verdict: SC says anyone whose fatwas harms others must be prosecuted

He stated that no one, including any government, department or intelligence agency, could curtail the fundamental right of freedom of speech, expression and press beyond the parameters mentioned in Article 19 of the Constitution.

“Pakistan is governed by the Constitution … obedience to the Constitution and the law is the inviolable obligation of every citizen wherever he may be and of every other person for the time being in Pakistan,” he wrote in the verdict.


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Parvez Sep 27, 2023 02:30pm
Plus one for Chief Justice Issa.
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Rebirth Sep 27, 2023 05:06pm
Another conspiracy to defame Sunni Muslims, the majority of Pakistan. The behavior is no different in India, where Maulana Tauqeer Raza Khan is not allowed to hold rallies in Western UP or Delhi. Neither are the Sunni Muslims from both nations allowed to attend each other’s rallies. This right is only reserved for the Deobandis and Wahabbis, who can visit both countries, and their scholars, as well as leaders can address quasi-political rallies in both nations. Cross-border ties between the Sunni Muslims in both nations are banned even when there hasn’t been a single criminal or extremist incident that can be directly linked to the Sunni ideology in any part of the subcontinent.
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