On Wednesday, Supreme Court Justice Qazi Faez Isa accused the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) of destroying the TV industry and imposing unwarranted restrictions on news channels.
Justice Isa noted that Pemra was earning revenue by licensing news channels while limiting their freedom to report on the conduct of judiciary judges.
He also criticized Pemra’s efforts to suppress the media’s voice and remarked that it gave the impression that the court was stifling the media.
The judge refused to hear the instant case and objected to the constitution of a special bench for hearing the matter of granting 20 extra marks to medical students for being Hafiz-i-Quran.
During the hearing, Attorney-General Shahzad Ata Elahi stated that Pemra had instructed satellite channels not to broadcast news related to judges’ conduct and state institutions.
Justice Isa highlighted that the Supreme Court is not a state institution but a constitutional regulatory body.
He further criticized Pemra for elevating the status of the apex court and suggested that Pemra should take action against the use of abusive language towards civil judges.
The judge asked if people considered judges of the subordinate judiciary to be inferior to those in the Supreme Court.
He also questioned why Pemra does not take action against those who speak against session judges, civil judges, or magistrates.
The judge acknowledged that Pemra could take action against the dissemination of false news, but he pointed out that blocking such news on news channels would drive people to social media.
Justice Isa also stated that if he had not done anything wrong, his conduct could not be subject to discussion.
He further stated that no one can question a person who becomes a judge of the Supreme Court.
The judge concluded that such issues could be attributed to the poor ranking of Pakistan’s judiciary.
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