NA standing committee approves bill on punishment for defaming Pak army

ISLAMABAD: The Standing Committee of the National Assembly for Interior has officially approved a law which declares anyone ridiculing and defaming the Pakistan Army or its members would be guilty and directed punishable for 2 years and a fine of 5 lakh or both.

Pakistan Peoples Party and Pakistan Muslim League (N) opposed this new law.

PPP’s Syed Agha and PML- N’s Marriyum Aurangzeb both raised that this law is against article 19 of Freedom of Expression.

Under Article 19 of the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, “every citizen shall have the right to freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom of the Press, subject to any ‘reasonable restriction’, imposed by law in the interest of the glory of Islam or the integrity, security or defense of Pakistan or any part thereof, friendly relations with foreign states, public order, or in relation to contempt of court or incitement to offense.”

They added that the law is also against the institutions in question. The opposition also raised that the why this amendment in law in presence of other laws after 150 years.

Chairman of committee Raja Khurram Nawaz voted for the bill and the bill passed after got equal votes.

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