PPP standing with journalists over defamation law: Hassan Murtaza

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Syed Hassan Murtaza says the PPP is standing firmly with the journalists’ community over the Punjab Defamation Bill which has now become the law.

The Punjab government issued the gazette notification of Punjab Defamation Law 2024 on Monday.

Addressing a press conference in Lahore, Hassan Murtaza said that the PPP didn’t vote for Maryam Nawaz in the election of chief minister to pass such a draconian legislation.

“I was expecting the projects of public welfare by Maryam Nawaz but it is really unfortunate that the people and journalists are equally dissatisfied by her performance,” said the PPP leader.

He added that the PPP decided to support the PML-N only for the sake of country.

According to Hassan Murtaza, the PPP wasn’t consulted over the defamation bill and not a single MPA of the party was present in the house when the bill was passed by the Punjab Assembly.

Also Read: Punjab Assembly passes controversial defamation bill amid opposition protest

“The PPP believes in the freedom of expression and we are standing with the journalists’ community over this law,” he said.

He added that the PPP is trying to get the bill reverted.

It merits mention here that the offender will pay a fine of Rs3 million before trial under the Punjab Defamation Law.

On evidence of accusation, social media account of offender will be blocked.

Tribunals will be formed that will announce the verdict within 180 days. No one can share opinion including journalists, lawyers on ongoing cases in tribunal.

High courts benches will hear the cases of personalities holding constitutional offices.

Dissemination of fake news, dis/misinformation on print, electronic and social media is prohibited under this law.

The Punjab Defamation Bill 2024 was passed by the Punjab Assembly on May 20.

The journalists’ community has already challenged the controversial legislation in the court and vowed to launch a movement against the government.

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