The Chief Justice of Lahore High Court Muhammad Qasim Khan on Friday heard a petition against PML-N leader Mian Javed Latif over controversial, “anti-state” remarks he earlier made.
During the hearing, Justice Qasim Khan questioned the PML-N leader about his remarks, wondering whether they were patriotic or showing loyalty towards a personality.
“People will keep coming and going [to and from positions of authority]. This country is here to stay. If someone doesn’t like Pakistan, they are free to leave,” the chief justice said.
LHC’s top judge added that he does not want to say anything against parliamentarians but if they have grievances, they should go to the police and get their statements recorded instead of coming to the court.
The LHC disposed off the petition as it was withdrawn.
In response to the petition filed against him for making anti-state remarks, Mian Javed Latif had said that the accusations hurled against him were false and a “baseless case of treason was registered against me.”
Speaking to journalists after the hearing, Mian Javed Latif said that the “title of treason has been imposed on people for 73 years.”
“Saying long live Pakistan is not patriotism. Mistakes made by people should be criticised and pointed out,” he said.
Mian Javed Latif added that even if he had to be hanged under such circumstances, he would not regret it.
“The [government] shouldn’t make policies that create traitors. I stand by my position and if I had been wrong, I would have withdrawn my statement.”
Ministers attack PML-N’s Javed Latif for ‘Pakistan Khappay’ statement
Back in March, several ministers of the government had criticised Javed Latif for his ‘Pakistan Khappay’ remarks, accusing him of issuing an anti-Pakistan statement.
Latif had said during a current affairs show on a private TV channel that if anything happened to PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz, the PML-N will not say “Pakistan Khappay.”
He was taking a jibe at former president Asif Zardari who had uttered those words after Benazir Bhutto was assassinated.
Special Assistant to Prime Minister of Pakistan on Political Communication Dr Shahbaz Gill said Latif’s statement had made it clear that money was dearer to the PML-N than anything else.
He said that those who talk against the solidarity of the country would meet the same fate that MQM founder Altaf Hussain had met, adding that he should apologise for the remarks.
SAPM to the Punjab Chief Minister on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan had lashed out at the statement, saying it is “the height of madness and shamelessness”.
“For this [statement] they deserve punishment, not forgiveness,” she had tweeted.
“This Maryam Safdar sycophant Javed Latif has the audacity to threaten to break up Pakistan. Any fool who places loyalty to a leader above loyalty to the country is a disgrace & should be dealt with accordingly,” tweeted federal minister Ali Zaidi.
Punjab police had registered a case against Mian Javed Latif over a complaint filed by a citizen for maligning state institutions.
The police had said that the case against the PML-N leader was registered at the Township Police Station of Lahore. They added that different sections of the law have been included in the case.
The police added that the case had been registered against the complaint of Lahore resident Jameel Saleem.
Saleem has claimed that Latif had hurled insults against Pakistan’s national security, government, and state institutions. He has also claimed that the PML-N leader sowed “seeds of hate” among the PPP and PML-N workers.
The complainant said that the MNA hurt the sentiments of the people to cause chaos in the country. He added that “through the statement, the PML-N leader tried to terrorise citizens.”
The FIR stated that by making such a statement the PML-N leader violated the law. He had included Sections 120, 120-B, 153, 153-A, 500 and 500 1 –B in the FIR.