IHC orders FIA to stop harassing PTI’s social media activists, workers – Pakistan

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) ordered the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FIA) on Thursday not to harass PTI’s social media activists and party members.

IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah gave an order to the watchdog, presiding over a hearing on a petition filed by PTI’s Ali Nawaz Awan. Respondents were mentioned in the petition by the Pakistan Federation, Punjab and Islamabad Inspector General, FIA Director-General (DG) and Cybercrime Investigation Agency (CCW) Director.

The petition asked the court to ask the defendants to stop harassing PTI members, conduct illegal raids, do not infringe on the honor and privacy of workers’ families, and declare the actions of the FIA ​​and the police unlawful.

Among other directives, Judge Minallah called the CCW Commissioner tomorrow while hearing the case and ordered the DG FIA to strictly enforce standard operating procedures. He said the courts would have heard the matter if it was raised at night.

Awan was represented in court by his attorney, Faisal Chaudhry.

“Do you know how the court handled the FIA?” Judge Minallah asked Chaudhry, referring to the court’s action while hearing the matter related to the Peca statute.

Chaudhry argued that the background to such activities and actions against PTI supporters is supporting the current government.

In response, the Chief Justice pointed out that Chaudhry made a statement that could have a double meaning.

PTI lawyers said the action was taken against party supporters after a regime change after Imran Khan was ousted in a vote of no confidence. “The FIA ​​conducted two raids on the house. [PTI’s] Dr. Arsalan Khalid, head of social media,” recalled.

Chaudhry wondered under what charges and under what law the FIA ​​raided Dr Khalid’s residence.

The court has since postponed the hearing on the case until 10 am tomorrow.

Later, as per a court order, PTI Secretary General Asad Umar congratulated the party’s social media activists and supporters.

The FIA ​​counter-terrorism unit took action after Khan’s ouster came after social networking websites began slandering the army chief of staff. Since last Sunday, the most popular hashtags on Twitter have been those aimed at the military, the judiciary and the new government, and on Tuesday the number of tweets using the hashtag surged to 4.3 million.

Read more: An interesting example of Twitter’s anti-state slander campaign

Most of the social media activists associated with the PTI went underground to evade the FIA ​​crackdown.

On Sunday, the home of Khan’s digital media chief, Dr. Arsalan Khaled, was raided in Lahore by plainclothes officers, stealing laptops and several cell phones. He is accused of running social media campaigns against certain state agencies. PTI claims that Dr. Khalid has never abused anyone on social media or attacked any institution.