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CII expresses concern over Swat video controversy

ISLAMABAD: In what appears to be a challenge to the so-called Qazi courts set up by some people in Swat, the Council of Islamic Ideology said on Wednesday that the judicial authority vested only with courts constituted under the Constitution.

“Any act of holding courts, passing judgments and carrying out execution in any manner other than provided for in the Constitution is violation of the Constitution,” the council said.

Expressing concern over a controversy sparked by alleged flogging of a teenage girl in Swat, the council said that it ranged from complaints about wrong reporting to complete denial of any incident having taken place.

The council said in a statement it planned to organise an international conference to examine issues relating to enforcement of Sharia. It will also discuss the Swat incident in its next meeting in the light of information provided by the authorities.

The council urged the media and the authorities to safeguard the sanctity of Sharia and the Constitution.

“Irrespective of whether the incident took place before or after the Swat agreement, the ongoing debate has given rise to many fundamental questions and damaged the credibility of enforcement of Sharia,” the council said, adding that attempts to use the event for political gains would be detrimental to the country’s image as well as Sharia.

“A lack of correct information and transparency on the part of government institutions will only increase anxiety and create confusion among the masses. The council, under these circumstances, feels obliged to observe that law making is a function of parliament, the procedure of which has been clearly defined in the Constitution of Pakistan,” it said.

The council said that a proposed bill, whether criminal or civil, had no legal or judicial validity till its approval by the competent authorities, adding that only the courts constituted under the Constitution had the judicial authority.

“The Constitution provides that no law in Pakistan can be promulgated which is not in consonance with the Quran and Sunnah, and to bring laws in conformity with the Quran and Sunnah a proper procedure has been laid down in the Constitution,” it added.
Source: Dawn
Date:4/9/2009

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