Remove terrorism section from Nawaz shoe hurling case, orders court

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LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court has ordered police to remove Section 7 of Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) 1997 from a case pertaining to the hurling of a shoe at former prime minister Nawaz Sharif at a ceremony in Jamia Naeemia in Garhi Shahu.

The ATC judge gave this order after hearing arguments from prosecution and defence counsels.

On March 11, a man hurled a shoe at Nawaz Sharif at an event at Jamia Naeemia seminary as he took to the podium to deliver a speech.

The prime accused, Munawwar Hussain, and his friends Muhammad Sajid and Abdul Ghafoor were arrested following the incident.

A case against the three was lodged under Section-16 (Dissemination of rumours) of the Punjab Maintenance of Public Order Ordinance and Section-355 (Assault or criminal force with intent to dishonour a person, otherwise than on grave provocation) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Later, Section 7 of the ATA was also incorporated in the FIR.

The accused person’s counsel argued before the court that his client hurled a shoe at Sharif out of hatred for introducing a controversial amendment to the law regarding the finality of Prophethood.

“Sharif is neither a prime minister nor a member of parliament. He, therefore, should be treated as an ordinary citizen, he added.”

Meanwhile, a prosecutor argued the crime comes within the ambit of terrorism as it created a law and order situation in addition to fear among participants of the gathering