LHC strikes down Section 124-A of sedition law

Great news! The Lahore High Court declared Section 124-A of the Criminal Law to be in conflict with the Constitution, recognizing the constitutional right to criticize state institutions. The decision to be recognized by the principles of

The Lahore High Court has declared Section 124-A of the sedition law as ultra vires to the Constitution.

A single bench of the high court, comprised of Justice Shahid Karim, on Thursday pronounced the verdict reserved two weeks earlier on identical petitions chal­lenging the sedition law.

Petitioner’s counsel Abuzar Niazi Advocate had argued: “Sedition laws are a leg­acy of the colonial history which were framed in 1860 and were used against slaves. Pakistan’s constitution gives freedom of expression and opinion to every citizen. Even today, people are being booked under Section 124-A (sedition) over speeches against the government.”

During the last hearing, Deputy Attorney Gen­eral Asad Ali Bajwa had represented the federal gov­ernment.

The court had then directed the federal government to submit details of sedi­tion cases filed in 12 months.

“The sedition law initially seems very ambiguous,” Justice Shahid Karim had remarked. DAG Asad Ali Bajwa had argued that Section 124-A had been in accordance with the Constitution.

PTI leader and former federal information minister Fawad Chaudhry has welcomed the LHC judge’s ruling.

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