THE Islamabad High Court's verdict allowing Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan to meet relatives and easing restrictions on his travel within the country, albeit on security clearance, is welcome. The single Bench, comprising Chief Justice Muhammad Aslam, while announcing the decision Monday on the habeas corpus petition, however, barred him from talking to the media about nuclear proliferation. The court ordered the authorities to provide medical facilities of his own choice to Dr Khan and also ruled that suitable arrangements be made for his visits to the Science Foundation for research under strict security. Dr Khan has been under house arrest since 2004 after he had confessed to having transferred nuclear secrets to other countries, but he later retracted this statement on the ground that he was made to do so under pressure from the government. The official denials about Dr Khan being kept under detention were disputed by his wife Mrs Hendrina Khan in her letter to the court while the case was pending before it. The petitioner's counsel Javed Jaffery went to the extent of saying that the judgement using the word 'detenue' was an admission of the fact that his client had been in illegal confinement. Dr Khan and his lawyers have met and discussed the review petition that was filed on Tuesday as they were not satisfied with the judgement. The government would be well advised to seek the removal of the ban the court has imposed on Dr Khan's interaction with the media following his observation that he had neither given any statement against Pakistan, nor would he do so in future. Not doing so will reflect poorly on the democratic dispensation, which does not tire of claiming to have removed all curbs on freedom of expression.