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Pak oppn parties file plea against top editor's arrest

March 17, 2020 02:16 PM

ISLAMABAD:Three Pakistani opposition parties have jointly filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) against the arrest of Mir Shakil-ur-Rehman, the editor-in-chief of the Jang Geo Media Group.

The IHC will take up the petition which was filed on Monday by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) and Jamaat-i-Islami (JI), on Wednesday, reports Dawn news.

The plea was signed by former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Ahsan Iqbal of the PML-N and some lawmakers of the JUI-F and JI.

The parties have alleged that the arrest on March 12 for illegal possession of a piece of land, was in violation of constitutional guarantees of fundamental rights and the law laid down by superior courts.

The petition claimed that before Rehman's arrest, the incumbent government had warned the Geo TV's management over its criticism and urged it to hold friendly programmes.

"There is no legal basis for issuing the arrest warrant as the accused is not a fugitive nor a terrorist nor a wanted criminal," says the petition.

The plea added it appeared that the arrest was an attempt to curb free media in the country and that it was seen in the light of show-cause notices issued to some channels by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority on behalf of National Accountability Bureau.

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