Islamabad: Pakistan’s Supreme Court today refused to entertain a petition filed by a religious cleric to impose Sharia law in the country.
Maulana Abdul Aziz of Red Mosque, better known as Lal Masjid, had filed the petition in December 2015 under Article 184(3) of the Constitution through his counsel Tariq Asad.
The Registrar office of the Supreme Court had turned down the plea in February 2016 by declaring it as non-maintainable. The cleric had challenged the rejection.
An official of the court said that Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar heard the appeal in his chamber against the decision of Registrar.
“The chief justice sustained the objections by the Registrar office and rejected the appeal,” the official said.
The petitioner maintained that Sharia provides solution for all ills confronted by Pakistan and asked the court to order the respondents to amend the Constitution to implement Islamic laws.
Aziz made president, the prime minister, the speaker of the national assembly, secretaries of law, justice and parliamentary affairs, governors and chief ministers of all four provinces and Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) as respondents.
The petitioner also said that the country was being “Indianised and westernised” through television channels and the “younger generation has been inspired into adopting modeling and acting, singing and dancing as careers.”
Aziz made headlines when he tried to escape from the red mosque clad in a woman’s burqa during 2007 military operation but was arrested. Several cases were filed against him but he was released on bail and also allowed to return to the mosque to continue preaching.
More than 100 people, including Aziz’s younger brother Abdul Rashid Ghazi, were killed when commandos stormed the mosque after a week-long standoff in July 2007.
The red mosque had been a militant hub in the heart of Islamabad with links to Pakistani Taliban. PTI