Lahore - A sessions court on Thursday dismissed a petition filed for the registration of a first information report (FIR) against the participants of the Aurat March.

Additional District and Sessions Judge Amir Habib said the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) was the appropriate forum to address the issue of posting pictures on the social media, and directed the petitioner to approach the proper forum for the purpose.

Last Wednesday, the court had reserved its verdict on the petition filed by Amina Malik of the Civil Society Network under section 22-A and 22-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure. The petition was filed for the registration of an FIR saying that immoral and unconstitutional acts had been carried out at the Aurat March.

Announcing the verdict on the petition, the judge remarked that the police had said no illegal measures had been taken by the participants during the rally. However, the court, said that the FIA was the appropriate forum and it could register a case as a cybercrime.

The court order states that the petition has alleged that “immoral pictures” of women were uploaded on the social media which “attract the application of the [Prevention of] Electronic Crime Act 2016”.  The order further states: “The instant petition stands disposed of with the observation that the petitioner shall approach the concerned forum for redressal of her grievance.”

The petition said the participants of the march had displayed placards with immoral slogans. The counsel representing the petitioner contended that the act was against the Constitution of Pakistan as well as Islamic principles, and requested the court to order the station house office to lodge an FIR against the participants in the march.

During the hearing, District Complaint Officer Faisal Mukhtar had filed a reply to the petition. The police submitted that no illegal or immoral act was committed in the march in front of Governor’s House on Women’s Day therefore no case could be filed for holding a peaceful rally.