The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday dismissed a petition seeking the registration of a treason case against ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif for his recent remarks on the Mumbai attacks.
Nawaz, in an interview with Dawn, had said: "Militant organisations are active. Call them non-state actors, should we allow them to cross the border and kill 150 people in Mumbai? Explain it to me. Why can’t we complete the trial?"
Soon after the publication of Nawaz's interview, Indian media had exaggerated his remarks, terming it an admission on part of the former prime minister that non-state actors from Pakistan were involved in the Mumbai attacks.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has maintained that the remarks were "misreported", and that "Indian media is giving the issue a different hue."
"Whatever was written by the reporter was misinterpreted by the Indian media in order to serve India's own purposes," the PM told the National Assembly on Tuesday, adding that local media had picked up India's narrative by widely reporting the remarks made by the ousted premier.
The petitioner, Pakistan Zindabad Party chief Advocate Aftab Virk, had sought registration of a case against Nawaz under Article 6 of the Constitution, which states: "Any person who abrogates or subverts or suspends or holds in abeyance, or attempts or conspires to abrogate or subvert or hold in abeyance, the Constitution by use of force or show of force or by any other unconstitutional means shall be guilty of high treason.".
Justice Shams Mahmood Mirza, who had yesterday reserved his judgement regarding the petition's maintainability, dismissed as withdrawn the petition today while advising the petitioner to approach a relevant forum with the complaint.
Virk had alleged in his petition that Nawaz's recent remarks regarding the Mumbai attacks amounted to treason as he had maligned national institutions as well as the country.
The court is yet to decide on the admissibility of another similar petition filed by Pakistan Awami Tehreek's Khurram Nawaz Gandapur.