Sexual harassment case: Lahore HC suspends sessions court order against Babar Azam

Last Updated: Monday, 22 March 2021 (16:09 IST)
Islamabad: The Lahore (LHC) on Monday suspended the order passed by the directing the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to register a case against Pakistan cricket captain and others in a harassment case, while also issuing notices to the and Hamiza Mukhtar.

Last week, a sessions court had directed the FIA to lodge a case against Azam based on a complaint given by Mukhtar, in which she had alleged that she was constantly receiving “threatening messages” from different mobile numbers on WhatsApp, adding that she was being blackmailed by the suspects who threatened her that they would upload fake pictures of her on social media if she did not accept their demands, Dawn reported.
 
The Additional District and Sessions Judge Hamid Hussain had said in his order that “Since, regular inquiry has commenced with respect to the complaint of the petitioner, the respondent (FIA) is directed to proceed further with respect to registration of FIR against the culprits within the stipulated time after committing legal formalities”.
 
However, Justice Asjad Javed Ghural, who presided over Monday’s hearing, noted that the cricketer had submitted a new request, in which he contended that he was an international cricketer and the captain of the national cricket team in all three formats. It contended that the order passed by the sessions court was an “unreasoned, non-speaking order”. His lawyer argued that the sessions court had issued the order in contravention of the law, as the order to register a case was given without hearing the position of Babar Azam.
 
It further added that the impugned order was in violation of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes and Investigation Rules 2018, while the direction to register an FIR was in violation of rule seven of the same.
 
The petition urged the LHC to set aside the order issued by the lower court.
 
Earlier this year, the LHC suspended the implementation of an order passed by a sessions court to the Naseerabad police to register a case against Azam on Mukhtar’s complaint.
 
Mukhtar had previously accused Azam of deceitfully maintaining sexual relations and making false promises of marriage. She had also alleged that she got pregnant in 2015 with his baby but was forced to abort the baby. (UNI)