Published On: Fri, Dec 4th, 2020
Published in Category: Islamabad

IHC rejects petition seeking ban on political and religious gathering due to corona virus

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ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court (IHC) has rejected the plea seeking imposition of ban on political and religious gathering in the country in the wake of corona virus epidemic.

Chief Justice (CJ) IHC Athar Minallah took up for hearing the petition filed by a citizen Hazrat Younus Thursday.

The petitioner took the plea that it is feared massive public gatherings in the country will lead to spread the Corona virus in the country. It is requested that court should order NCOC to ensure implementation of guideline in respect of outdoor public meetings. Orders be issued to stop holding political and religious gathering. PEMRA be ordered to stop any news item aimed at violating corona guidelines to be aired.

Counsel for the petitioner said ” you have remarked in your recent decision that ensuring implementation of NCOC guidelines is must. The violation is continuing despite NCOC guidelines.

CJ IHC Athar Minallah remarked “we have given order. If executive is not ensuring its implementation then it is upto executive.

The counsel said implementing corona SOPs is responsibility of state.

The court remarked ” parliament is here. Executive is here. If society is not discharging its obligation then why the court should interfere. No one is implementing court’s order and every one is engaged in politics. Then why should we interfere.

CJ Athar Minallah remarked petitioner should trust on parliament and only parliament can find out its solution. Such things should not come in the court. Implementation on NCOC orders is must because emergency situation prevails. When parliament is silent and executive is also not ensuring implementation of court’s order then why the court should interfere. Then this question arises is this country running under rule of law. Our general public is also not adhering to it. The poor will be affected most. The citizens are also not following. Why should we make unnecessary interference?

The counsel for the petitioner said the court should order PEMRA not to give coverage to those who are not adhering to SOPs.

The court remarked no order will be given to PEMRA as element of freedom of expression is therein. The name of petitioner Hazrat Younus too is beautiful and he should tell the people about corona SOPs.

The court reserved the judgment on maintainability of petition.

Later in its decision the court while rejecting the petition remarked parliament and executive should play their role in gathering the nation to deal with the corona virus. The petitioner should trust on parliament and executive authorities. Court does not want to exercise additional constitutional powers in corona case. The petitioner should present his reservations before parliament and elected representatives. It is function of government and parliament to unite the nation to deal with corona challenge.

The court remarked ” the parliament role is vital than all to guide the people in corona crisis. The elected representatives will have to demonstrate extraordinary leadership abilities. The role of elected representatives is to secure the people from loss. It is expected opposition and treasury benches will unite the people. Ensuring the implementation of its decisions to secure the lives of people is responsibility of the government. When government stands devoid of the capability for implementing its decisions then the court’s decisions lose their meaning.