LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) has sought replies from columnist Ansar Abbasi and the printer and publisher of Jang Group – Mir Shakilur Rahman and Javedur Rahman – over a contempt of court petition. The three respondents have been directed to submit their replies on February 6.
While hearing an application moved by Mazhar Ali and others, LHC Chief Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah observed that the court could not stay silent while the judiciary was being scandalised. The applicants were represented by Azam Nazir Tarar and Imran Chadhar Advocate. They pleaded that Jang Group published a news story against Nanhoo Goria and Justice (retd) Bilal and scandalised the judiciary.
“Justice (retd) Bilal was given a clean chit in an inquiry by LHC which is proof that the news item published was false and, therefore, contempt of court action should be taken against Ansar Abbasi, Mir Shakilur Rehman and Javedur Rehman for scandalising the judiciary,” they argued.
The public lawyer pointed out that the matter dates back to 2009 and is not valid now. He pleaded that the applications be disposed of.
The court, however, observed that since it was an issue of scandalising the judiciary, the court cannot let it go. A case of publishing a wrong news story cannot be disposed of without an apology. The respondents will have to give an explanation. The court adjourned the hearing till 6 February and ordered replies from Ansar Abbasi, Mir Shakilur Rehman and Javedur Rehman.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 5th, 2017.