LAHORE – The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday sought a detailed report from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and the Pakistan Electronic Media and Regulatory Authority (Pemra) regarding steps taken by them to stop blasphemous material on internet.

The counsels of the PTA and Pemra appeared before the court and sought more time to file replies. Justice Ijazul Ahsan accepted their request and deferred hearing until October 22.

The court had ordered the PTA and Pemra to immediately stop telecasting all films made on the lives of different prophets either by television channels or the cable operators.

Aalmi Majlis-e-Tahafuz-e-Khatm-e-Nabuwat through Advocate Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan moved the petition challenging criminal negligence of the authorities concerned over an anti-Islam movie recently made in the US.

During the course of proceedings on Friday, Ishtiaq said the movies were being shown on television channels and sold in markets which disclosed that authorities concerned had not taken any action against telecasting and selling of movies.

In the petition, the religious party submitted the PTA had not shown its responsibility regarding the blasphemous movies, web links on internet despite the court orders made in a verdict issued in 2011. He said the blasphemous videos and material was still easily available for viewers and that was enraging the different walks of society.

He pointed out that pictures, movies and dramas on the lives of all prophets were not allowed in the light of order of the Federal Shariat Court. But, all these movies were being broadcast on cable network throughout the country.

He contended sale and purchase of blasphemous material including Compact Discs (CDs) video, pictures and movies should be stopped.

He requested the court for directions to the authorities concerned to stop telecasting of every video or movie about prophets through cable networks of the country.

Hearing another petition on Friday, Justice Manzoor Ahmad Malik of the Lahore High Court sought assistance of the deputy attorney general on a petition seeking implementation of the lower court orders to the police to register case against manufacturers of blasphemous movie, PTA chairman and Pemra, Ministry of Information through their secretary.

The court issued these orders on petition moved by Khatam-e-Nabuwat Lawyers Forum. The petitioner submitted that on September 26, a sessions court had directed the SHO Islampura police to record statement of the petition seeking registration of the case against the accused but the SHO neither recorded their statement nor registered the case against actors, producer and writer of the blasphemous movie.

He prayed the LHC to initiate contempt of court proceedings against the SHO for not registering the FIR despite court orders.

Also, the LHC on Friday reserved verdict on a petition challenging opening bids for purchase of Euro-II compliant diesel buses by the Punjab government for various purposes including the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS).

The court initially had granted a stay order against opening of the bids. Meanwhile, the court had vacated the stay order to the extent of purchase of 100 buses for the BRTS.

Punjab Advocate General Ashtar Ali Ausaf on Friday appeared before the court of Justice Ijazul Ahsan and requested the court to also vacate the stay order issued against opening of 1,100 Euro-II buses.

He informed the court that the provincial government was purchasing the buses to facilitate the passengers of the City in view of an earlier verdict of the LHC.