Qamar Javed Bajwa: Former Pakistani army chief, spymaster put on notice

Pakistani flag army soldier

Pakistan's Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Aamer Farooq on Monday issued notices to former army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa, ex-spymaster Faiz Hamid and two journalists, in response to a petition seeking legal proceedings for allegedly flouting Official Secrets Act.

In the petition, Atif Ali — a concerned citizen — sought the registration of a case against the journalists and the former generals over news reports regarding the ex-military officers' role in politics. The director general of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) was also put on notice. Justice Farooq heard the petition on October 4, but the court order was released on Monday.

The petitioner contended that the interview of ex-Gen Bajwa was conducted in a "reckless" manner and the journalists, Javed Chaudhry and Shahid Maitla, did not show any sense of responsibility in publishing them. The petition claimed the revelations made in the interview(s) were a violation of the Official Secrets Act and tantamount to inciting mutiny and disharmony.

It requested the court to issue directions to the director general of the Federal Investigation Agency to register an FIR against the former COAS, former ISI chief, and the journalists. Besides, it also sought directions for the Pakistan Electronic Media Regu­latory Authority to impose a ban on the two journalists.

Initially, the registrar's office of the IHC in March this year raised an objection, saying that the High Court was not an appropriate forum and asked the petitioner to approach the relevant authorities. When the petition was heard by the chief justice, he asked the FIA DG to proceed in accordance with the law. However, the petitioner during the hearing informed the court that the investigation agency did not take any action.

Subsequently, Justice Farooq issued notices to all respondents which included Gen Bajwa, ex-ISI DG, journalists Chaudhry and Maitla, and the FIA.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024