ISLAMABAD / HYDERABAD: The Islamabad High Court will take up a petition on Monday (today) seeking protective bail for journalist Arshad Sharif in the FIRs registered against him in several cities over the last couple of days.

Through an interim order passed late on Saturday night, IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah had granted protective bail to Mr Sharif.

Since Mr Sharif was not in attendance, the court kept the matter pending till Monday.

It may be recalled that multiple cases were lodged against journalists Arshad Sharif, Sabir Shakir and Imran Riaz Khan for allegedly spreading hate against army and state institutions. The cases were registered at police stations in Latifabad and Dadu.

Tayyab Hussain, a resident of Latifabad, lodged a case under sections 131 (abetting mutiny, or attempt to seduce a soldier, sailor or airman from his duty), 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot if rioting be committed), if not committed [then] 505 (statements conducing to public mischief) of PPC at B-section police station of Latifabad, Hyderabad district, on May 20.

Mr Hussain said he had heard Arshad Sharif speaking against Pakistan Army on his YouTube channel to spread hate among institutions.

Another FIR was lodged at Dadu district’s A-section police station vide crime No 26/22 on May 20 under the same sections on a complaint of one Amir Ali Leghari.

The complainant said legal action should be taken against them.

Yet another FIR was lodged in Thatta under sections 131, 153 and 505 of PPC on a complaint by one Ashiq Ali against anchorperson Imran Riaz Khan, accusing him of spreading hate against the army.

Meanwhile, PTI chairman Imran Khan through a tweet condemned the registration of the FIRs and termed it political victimisation of journalists.

Published in Dawn, May 23rd, 2022

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