Court moved against broadcast of speech ‘ushering in boots’


A petition has been filed against Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) acting chairman Pervez Rathore in Islamabad High Court (IHC) under Article 199 of constitution after television channels broadcast a speech of a political leader inviting the army to take over the government.

Petitioner Shahid Orakzai took the plea on Friday that Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Chairman Altaf Hussain, during his address to party workers from abroad on August 17, 2014 invited the armed forces to take over the government. All private media channels broadcast it directly but no action has been taken by PEMRA, the petitioner maintained.

It was further stated in the petition that the political leader extended an invitation to the army chief and particularly Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) director general after one week and the “leader of the political party incited the armed forces to commit blatant breach of constitution”.

Under Article 49 of the constitution, the president of Pakistan and any political leader is not entitled to deliver political address directly from outside the country, the petitioner has contended, adding that the PEMRA chief has to stop private media channels from broadcasting speeches delivered from outside the country.

The petitioner prayed to the court that the PEMRA chief be summoned in court and be directed to furnish the record of addresses delivered by the leader of a political party wherein he had invited the armed forces to take over power. Details of orders given for initiation of action against private television channels should also be sought from the PEMRA chief, the petitioner requested.

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