Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui instructed Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) Chairman Absar Alam and DG Technical to be included in the committee that would oversee the content on morning shows, talk shows and other programmes being aired on television channels.
The judge passed the order while hearing the case filed by Salman Shahid (son-in-law of Abdul Aziz of Lal Masjid fame).
In his petition, Shahid had argued that the presence of blasphemous content on social media websites was “hurting the religious sentiments of Muslims”.
The court told the Pemra chairman that if the Article 19 is included in the laws of the regularity body, the licences of six or seven television channels will be cancelled.
It directed that the committee should review advertisements and international content being aired on the television.
“We have worked hard over the past one year to ban Indian channels,” Alam told the judge.
“Obscene content ─ regardless of whether it comes from Saudi Arabia, Turkey or India… we don’t need it,” the judge told the chairman. “Why do we follow America and India?” he asked.
The court was of the opinion that there was a well thought agenda in practice to ruin the youth of this country.
“Which non-governmental organisations are attempting to make Pakistan a sex-free society,” the court questioned.
During a hearing of the case earlier this week, the FIA had told the court that the government has approached Facebook for access to the records of the three controversial pages accused of spreading blasphemous content that were blocked by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority.
The FIA director also told the court that an application will be launched under international law if the Facebook administration failed to comply with the Pakistani government’s request.
The IHC has also ordered the government to put the names of those involved in posting blasphemous content on social media on the Exit Control List (ECL).