KARACHI: Noted legal experts say curbs on all Geo channels that have been in force for the past four months are illegal and called for their immediate opening.They said Geo News was their favorite channel and its unavailability was felt seriously. It is a contempt of court not to open the Geo News despite court orders, they added.
Talking to this correspondent, Vice Chairman Sindh Bar Council (SBC) Abdus Sattar Qazi said for the last few days Geo News was being received at his home but at the last numbers while it was not available at all in other parts of the country. This, he said, was the mischief of cable operators.
President Sindh High Court Bar Association ZK Jatoi said the programme was not available at his residence. Following the court orders the channel should be opened forthwith, he demanded.
Secretary General Sindh High Court Bar Association Asim Iqbal said ban on Geo News was illegal. “Following the court orders Geo News should be opened forthwith. If not, it will be contempt of court,” he added.
Member Sindh Bar Council Mahmood-ul-Hasan also complained of unavailability of Geo News at his residence. Asked about reason for that, he said it was due to the fight of Geo News with the cable operators.
He threatened to move a constitutional petition to the Sindh High Court against the cable operators if Geo News continued to be off air at his residence. President Karachi Bar Association Barrister Salahuddin said due to ban he could not monitor Geo News. “Despite court orders, the unavailability of the channel is illegal.” He appealed for immediate restoration of Geo News channel.
Former president of Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Yasin Azad said banning Geo News was a violation of the Constitution. “It is an issue of freedom of expression; it’s a source of information. The 180 million people of the country get information from TV channels,” he said.