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Lahore High Court Strikes Down Sedition Law: A Victory for Freedom of Expression in Pakistan?

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The Lahore High Court has struck down Section 124-A of the Pakistan Penal Code, which deals with sedition. This section made it a crime to bring the government into contempt or to excite disaffection toward the government. The court’s decision came in response to a set of petitions filed by citizens who argued that the sedition law was being used against the government’s rivals and that it violated the constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of expression.

The petitioners argued that the sedition law, enacted during British colonial rule, was being used for political purposes and was therefore unconstitutional. They contended that the law was being used to silence criticism of the government and that it was being selectively enforced against those who spoke out against the government.

The court agreed with the petitioners and ruled that the sedition law was unconstitutional. The court held that the law violated the right to freedom of expression and was being used for political purposes. The court noted that criticism of the government was a fundamental right in a democracy and that the sedition law had no place in a democratic society.

The court’s decision is a significant victory for freedom of expression in Pakistan. It sends a strong message that the government cannot use outdated laws to silence its critics. It also reaffirms the importance of free speech in a democratic society.

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