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Freedom of Expression

Islamabad High Court Declares Journalist & Poet Farhad a Missing Person, Session Court Sent Him On Judicial Remand

Pakistan Press Foundation

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has declared journalist and poet Ahmed Farhad a missing person until he reaches home safely and ruled his arrest unlawful, highlighting concerns about the procedures followed by law enforcement agencies. Kashmiri poet Farhad was reported missing from Islamabad on May 15 and later found in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) […]


Another Petition Filed Challenging Punjab’s New Defamation Law

Pakistan Press Foundation

On June 11, a new petition has been filed in the Lahore High Court challenging the recently enacted defamation law in Punjab. The petition was jointly submitted by the Association of Electronic Media Editors and News Directors (AEMEND) and the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ). Amid heated debate and public outcry, the Acting Governor […]


Lahore High Court Temporarily Holds Key Sections of Punjab’s New Defamation Law

Pakistan Press Foundation

The Lahore High Court (LHC) on June 11 put a temporary hold on the enforcement of critical sections of the recently enacted Punjab Defamation Act 2024, as legal scrutiny over its constitutionality intensifies. Justice Muhammad Amjad Rafiq presided over the session that temporarily suspended Sections 3, 5, and 8 of the Act pending a detailed […]


Political parties oppose the Punjab Defamation Act 2024

Pakistan Press Foundation

The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has voiced strong objections to the newly enacted Punjab Defamation Act 2024, criticizing the Punjab government for a lack of consultation in the drafting process. Although the PPP is not formally part of the coalition government in Punjab, where the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) holds a simple majority, it has […]


IHC Orders Live Telecast of Enforced Disappearance Cases, Summons Top Officials

Pakistan Press Foundation

On May 24, Islamabad High Court (IHC) allowed the live telecast of all cases related to enforced disappearances. This ruling came during a hearing on the petition for the recovery of the missing Kashmiri poet and journalist, Ahmed Farhad Shah, allegedly detained by an intelligence agency from Islamabad. A petition was filed by Shah’s wife on the […]


Punjab Assembly Passes Controversial Defamation Bill Amid Protests

Pakistan Press Foundation

On May 20, the Punjab Assembly passed a controversial defamation bill despite strong opposition from journalists and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-backed Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC). The Punjab Defamation Bill,2024, which allows for the establishment of special tribunals to address “fake news,” was passed by a voice vote after the government refused to delay voting despite requests […]


Quetta Press Club Sealed Shut to Block BYC Seminar, Journalists Vow Nationwide Protests

Pakistan Press Foundation

Police and local administration officials sealed shut the gates of the Quetta Press Club on May 18 in a move raising concerns about press freedom. The closure was reportedly an attempt to prevent the Baloch Yakjehti Committee (BYC) from holding a seminar at the venue. BYC members arrived at the press club only to find it inaccessible. […]


PPF alarmed by PML-N led governments’ push to regulate free expression in digital spaces; wary of misuse to target media professionals

Pakistan Press Foundation

In the past few weeks, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz-led government at the helm of the federal government and in the Punjab province has demonstrated its lack of regard for the need to protect free expression online, presenting and approving different bills that increase the regulation of free speech online. Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) is concerned […]


Supreme Court of Pakistan Orders Better Investigation into Journalist Abductions

Pakistan Press Foundation

On May 13, the Supreme Court of Pakistan expressed dissatisfaction with the police investigation into the abduction and harassment cases of three journalists, Matiullah Jan, Asad Toor, and Absar Alam. The court ordered the Islamabad police to appoint “competent officers” to conduct a thorough re-investigation. A three-judge bench led by Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa […]


AJK Protests: Internet and Cellular Services Disrupted, ARY News Journalist Injured

Pakistan Press Foundation

Protests over high wheat and electricity prices have caused significant disruption in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) since May 11, leading to the suspension of internet and cellular services in various regions. Amid the turmoil, ARY News journalist Sardar Ayaz was injured while covering the events. Organized by the Awami Joint Action Committee (JAC), the demonstrations demanded lower electricity […]


Bogus Petitioners: Supreme Court Probes Misrepresentation in Media Freedom Regulation Case from 2022

Pakistan Press Foundation

In a Supreme Court session on May 13, revelations emerged that three out of six litigants, initially part of a 2022 petition aiming to regulate media freedom, declared they never consented to the case. The disclosure came during a hearing by a three-judge bench led by the Chief Justice of Pakistan Qazi Faez Isa. The […]


Journalists Experiencing Assaults, Censorship, and Financial Pressure: journalists’ associations

Pakistan Press Foundation

On May 3, journalists’ associations in Pakistan expressed concerns over the country’s deteriorating state of media freedom. The Association of Electronic Media Editors and News Directors (AEMEND) and the Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) issued statements shedding light on the myriad challenges faced by journalists in Pakistan. AEMEND condemned the increase in attacks on journalists, with many losing […]


New Cyber Crime Agency Established to Tackle Online Crimes and Regulate Social Media

Pakistan Press Foundation

The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication announced the establishment of the National Cyber Crime Investigation Agency (NCCIA) in a notification dated April 24. This new body is set to replace the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) Cybercrime Wing, which has now ceased its cybercrime functions. The announcement followed remarks by Information Minister Attaullah Tarar, who expressed the government’s commitment to “safeguard the […]


Pakistan’s Press Freedom Ranking Declines Two Points in Latest RSF Index

Pakistan Press Foundation

Pakistan has descended two places in the 2024 World Press Freedom Index released by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) on May 3. The country now stands at 152 out of 180 nations, marking a decline from its position at 150 in the previous year’s index. The RSF report highlights that the political indicator, one of the five metrics used to compile its rankings, saw […]