Rawalpindi police have registered a case against journalist Waqar Satti on allegations of attributing “disrespectful” statements “not based on facts” about Islam to PTI chairperson Imran Khan.
The case was registered at RA Bazar police station on Saturday on the complaint of a cable operator, Chaudhry Nasir Qayyum, under Sections 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and 500 (punishment for defamation) of the Pakistan Penal Code.
According to the first information report (FIR), a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, the complainant told the police that while he was at his office on August 24, he came across a tweet in which a man, identified as Waqar Satti, explained why he “hates” Imran and reasons of him going against the former prime minister.
The FIR mentioned statements which, according to the complainant, “disrespected” Islam.
Satti, he said, attributed these statements to Imran. He added that he had never heard any Muslim making such remarks and “linking these words and remarks to former prime minister Imran Khan is not based on facts”.
“Imran Khan has not mentioned any such words […] mentioned in Waqar Satti’s tweet — in any of his speeches,” the FIR quoted him as saying. He added that Satti’s actions had hurt his religious sentiments, “as well as that of thousands of other Muslims”.
The complainant alleged that Satti had done “great injustice” and sought legal action against him on the basis of these accusations.
As the news of Satti being booked was shared on social media, former minister and PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry reacted to a tweet and said that the case was about “using religion for outrage”.
“And this is what the gentleman did; shame on all supporters for using religion for political purposes,” he said.
Later, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb condemned the registration of the FIR, saying: “While Imran Khan holds seminar on media freedom in Islamabad, he kills that freedom through the Punjab government.”
She went on to say that when a journalist “points you (Imran) out, his character is assassinated and serious cases are registered against him at your behest.
“This is a clear example of fascism.”