Controversial Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 challenged in LHC

Controversial Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 challenged

Controversial Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 challenged in LHC

Journalists Jafar Ahmed Yar and Raja Riaz have challenged the controversial “Punjab Defamation Bill 2024” in the Lahore High Court (LHC). They filed a petition against this newly introduced bill after the acting Punjab governor, Malik Muhammad Ahmad Khan, signed it today.

Malik Muhammad Ahmad Khan is serving in place of Punjab governor, Sardar Salim, who is recently on leave. Petitioners Jafar and Raja have also nominated the Punjab governor, CM Maryam Nawaz, and the province administration in their petition. They considered it an attack on their fundamental rights regarding freedom of speech.

Petitioners filed a lawsuit against CM Maryam Nawaz and the Punjab Governor for Defamation Act

This petition came after the Punjab Assembly passed the Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 on May 20, 2024. However, the government faced a loud and forceful opposition protest in the Assembly. This bill has also received massive condemnation from International human rights organizations and the media.

The Punjab government claimed the motive behind this bill is to provide legal protection from false, misleading, or defamatory claims made by print, electronic, or social media platforms.

This bill allows the establishment of special tribunals to trial anyone who generates, publishes, or gives fraudulent news. The tribunal will hold a trial within six months. It could result in PKR 3 million penalties for offenders.

According to Article 3 of the bill, defaming someone by harming their reputation is a civil offense. Hence, someone can file a lawsuit against anyone they believe has harmed their reputation without providing evidence that they suffered any financial or other losses.

Journalists and International human rights organizations have expressed concerns over Defamation Bill

Click here to read the updates on Media JAC rejects Punjab Defamation Bill 2024

Hence, petitioners Jafar and Raja Riaz challenged this controversial Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 through lawyer Nadeem Sarwar in LHC.

According to the petition, the defamation legislation violates both the law and the constitution. It further stated that this bill also prohibits the creation of a new law.

However, the petitioners criticized the government’s move to pass and approve this bill without consulting journalists. They emphasized that the government quickly introduced this bill to control media. Hence, they asked LHC to abolish this law while describing it as a “draconian” bill.

Read More:

Share this content:

Post Comment