KARACHI: Sindh High Court (SHC) directed the provincial advocate-general on Friday to present specifics of wine breweries that are purportedly run by Muslims.
This happened only a day after the SHC issued orders to seal wine shops all across the province. Headed by SHC chief justice Sajjad Ali Shah, a two-judge bench heard a petition against brewing and sale of liquor by Muslims, to Muslims. The petition was filed by Pakistan Qaumi Movement chief Syed Muhammad Iqbal Kazmi.
The petitioner mentioned Murree Brewery, Quetta Distillery, Mehran Distillery and Brewery along with others as some of the companies engaged in this illegal process.
Kazmi said that according to the national census conducted in 1998, the country’s 95.97% population was Muslim, while 4.03% were non-Muslims and that no law in contravention of religious injunctions will be made and enforced in Pakistan.
He added that the Section 4 of Prohibition (Enforcement of Hadd) Order, 1979, provides that only non-Muslims can brew, consume, keep and sell liquor to non-Muslims only. He argued that the ordinance is flawed.
He further claimed that the major breweries and distilleries in the country were being run by Muslims, which was against the provisions of the Prohibition (Enforcement of Hadd) Order, 1979.
He pleaded the court declare sections 3, 4 and 17 of the Prohibition (Enforcement of Hadd) Order, 1979 in direct violation of each other. The court was also besieged to declare production, consumption and sale of liquor by Muslims illegal.
After hearing the initial arguments, the chief justice directed Sindh AG to submit specifics regarding the breweries that are being allegedly run by Muslims. He requested for further time and the hearing was adjourned to a date to be later notified by the office.