LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Monday directed the advocate general of Punjab to sit with the stakeholders and ensure implementation of a 2019 verdict requiring action against the people involved in publication of unauthentic copies of the Holy Quran.

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar was directed by the court to appear in person to explain the government’s position in the case.

However, Punjab Advocate General Ahmad Awais told the court that the chief minister was not in the country as he had gone to Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah.

The principal secretary to the chief minister and other government officials also appeared before the court.

Justice Shujaat Ali Khan adjourned further hearing till Nov 30 and directed the AGP to submit a compliance report about the implementation of the orders.

Hassan Muawayah, the petitioner, alleged that Ahamdi community and other non-Muslims continued to publish and upload copies of the Holy Quran with distorted Arabic text and mutilated translation on the internet and Google Play Store only to mislead the Muslims.

The petitioner told the court that repeated applications had been filed with the Home department and police authorities for action against the suspects in the light of the court judgement.

He said the conduct of the respondent authorities was in violation of the law and the court’s decision.

In the judgement passed in 2019, Justice Khan had ordered the government to ensure the copies of the Holy Quran were duly approved by the Quran Board before the publication in press and on the internet.

The judge had directed the Quran Board and the government to have a vigilant eye on the publication and printing of any religious material, particularly the Holy Quran, against the original texts or authentic meanings.

disposed of: The Lahore High Court on Monday disposed of a petition challenging the transfer of the capital city police officer (CCPO) and other police officers posted in the metropolis.

The petitioner had pleaded that the transfer orders had been issued in violation of a ban imposed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

However, a government law officer told the court that permission had been obtained from the ECP before making the transfer and posting of the police officers.At this, the court observed that the ECP was the appropriate forum to deal with the grievance of the petitioner.

The court disposed of the petition and directed the petitioner to agitate his grievance before the relevant forum.

The government had transferred CCPO Ghulam Mahmood Dogar, DIG Operations Sohail Chaudhry and DIG Investigation Shariq Jamal apparently for mishandling of recent protests by the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan.

Assailing the transfers, petitioner Ammar Rafiq through his counsel argued that the ECP had on Oct 18, 2021, announced a by-election in NA-133.

He said the ECP also put a ban on the transfer and posting of government officials till the publication of the returned candidate in the by-poll to be held on Dec 5.

He argued that the notification regarding the transfer of the three police officers had been issued in violation of the Election Act 2017 order and the constitutional provisions.

The petitioner asked the court to set aside the impugned notification issued by the Punjab government.

Published in Dawn, November 9th, 2021

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