Contempt case against Ansar Abbasi, Mir Shakilur Rehman and Amir Ghauri
FOE Link or motive by PPFConfirmed
Case Update Status
On Jan 20, 2022 The Islamabad High Court (IHC) deferred the indictment of journalists
Summary of Case
"On 16 Nov, 2021 Islamabad High Court (IHC)’s Chief Justice Athar Minallah issued show-cause notices to Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, Jang/Geo Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, The News Editor Aamir Ghauri and The News Editor Investigations Ansar Abbasi as well as former chief justice Gilgit Baltistan, Rana Shamim in-person and others, under the Contempt of Court Ordinance.
Rana Shamim, The News Editor, Aamir Ghauri, and Ansar Abbasi appeared before the court on Dec 19. The Islamabad High Court (IHC) decided to indict them on January 7, 2022 in a contempt of court case.
The proceedings are a reaction to an investigative report by Abbasi published on November 15 of a notarized affidavit by former Chief Justice of Gilgit Baltistan Rana Shamim that stated that he had witnessed former Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar direct a high court judge not to let former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif or PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz out on bail before the 2018 general elections “at any cost”.
According to The News, an IHC written order from the hearing on December 28 had stated that “the three journalists prima facie committed criminal contempt by reporting on the matter”.
The former GB chief judge and others have been summoned for indictment on January 7.
The Association of Electronic Media Editors and News Directors (AEMEND) said that the contempt charges are “worrying since the journalists merely reported an affidavit which exists and has been verified”.
The All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) said the “order of the court would impact on the existing state of beleaguered freedom of press and would discourage journalists from reporting on matters of public interest”. The APNS said reporting the story “which was not denied” wouldn’t damage the respect of the court but “framing charges against the journalists would tantamount to suppressing the freedom of expression and denial of people’s right to know”.
“We entreat the honourable court to annul this decision,” said the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) in a statement expressing disappointment at the IHC’s decision.
On Jan 7, 2021 The Islamabad High Court (IHC) deferred indictment of former chief judge of Gilgit-Baltistan Rana Mohammad Shamim, senior journalists Ansar Abbasi and Aamir Ghauri and Editor-in-Chief of Jang Group Mir Shakeel-ur-Rehman till Jan 20 in the contempt of court case.
Nasir Zaidi, representing the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ), pointed out that journalists in Pakistan were already working under certain pressures and uncongenial environment.
He expressed apprehension that any adverse order by a well-respected judge would pave way for others to curtail freedom of expression.
Justice Minallah assured that he would never pass any order that would ever restrict freedom of expression. Subsequently, the court adjourned further hearing in this matter till Jan 20.
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Jan 20 indicted former Gilgit-Baltistan chief justice Rana Shamim in a contempt of court case but deferred the framing of charges against the media personnel also named in the case, including journalist Ansar Abbasi and Jang Group owner Mir Shakeelur Rehman."
Category of Incident
Petition against journlaist
ICCS Divisions: 0202 -Acts against liberty
ICCS Group: 02022-Deprivation of liberty
ICCS Class: 020222-Illegal restraint
ICCS Crime: Acts against liberty
Date of incident
Name of affected person
Other affected persons
Mir Shakilur Rehman & Amir Ghouri
Name of affected organization
Other affected organizations
No other organization affected
Islamabad High Court (IHC)
Editor, Editor in Chief
Age of victim
"Ansar Abbasi: Age - 56 years Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman: Age - 65 years "
Amount of compensation announced by government: No compensation announced
Date of compensation announcement by government: No compensation announced
Date of compensation paid by government: No compensation announced
Amount of compensation announced by others: No compensation announced
Date of compensation announced by others: No compensation announced
Date compensation paid by others: No compensation announced
Was FIR registered ?: No
Was case investigated ?: N/A
Court where case was presented: Islamabad High Court
Name of prosecuting lawyer: N/A
Date of first court hearing: 29/12/2021
Date of last court hearing: 20/01/2022
Status of court case: On Jan 20, 2022 The Islamabad High Court (IHC) deferred the indictment of journalists.
Journalist Union Status
"PFUJ & PBC: The Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ), Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) and Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) have expressed concern over court directives to indict journalists in a case related to the affidavit of former chief judge of Gilgit-Baltistan Rana Shamim. In a joint statement issued on Monday, the PFUJ, PBC and HRCP said that journalists should not be punished for merely performing their professional duties. PFUJ, PBC and HRCP say journalists must not be punished for doing their duties CPNE: Condemned.APNS: The All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) said the “order of the court would impact on the existing state of beleaguered freedom of press and would discourage journalists from reporting on matters of public interest”. APNS: The APNS said reporting the story “which was not denied” wouldn’t damage the respect of the court but “framing charges against the journalists would tantamount to suppressing the freedom of expression and denial of people’s right to know”."
Media Source Status
Colleague of victim
Press Club Status
Press club 1: N/A
Press club 2:
Press club 3: