Top 12 Bizarre petitions in Pakistani courts

Published: June 3, 2011

While many languish in prisons waiting for justice, the courts are busy taking on lusty pop songs and plain stupidity!

While thousands languish in prisons waiting for justice, the Pakistani legal system is otherwise occupied.

In between trials of murder, rape and kidnapping are some rather unusual petitions filed in our courts by passionate individuals. Petitioners have attacked everything from lusty pop songs, to forgetful politicians and just plain stupidity:

1. Ban the Bible

Addressing a press conference at a mosque, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Samiul Haq (JUI-S) leader Maulana Abdul Rauf Farooqi appealed to the Supreme Court (SC) to take suo motu notice of  “blasphemous” material – in the Bible. They even suggested banning the book.

2. Is Meera a virgin?

Atiqur Rehman, who claimed to be Meera’s husband, in an application sought to conduct a test to determine whether the star was a virgin or not. Instead of convincing the judiciary about his marriage, Rehman came up with the brilliant idea of testing Meera’s virginity. However, the judge declined the plea, keeping in mind that such a test might open another Pandora’s box for the already infamous actress.

(Also check out a petition filed against Meera for performing in ‘immoral’ scenes. A petition was filed against the star in the Sindh High Court (SHC) in Karachi, stating that she had performed in “immoral scenes” in Bollywood movies which did not match with Pakistan’s religious and social values.)

3. Does Waseem Akram drink whisky?

A petition was filed by Mohammad Fayyaz, in the civil court of Lahore claiming that former Pakistani cricketer Wasim Akram had damaged the sentiments of Muslims by posing in a liquor advertisement.

Muslims have no problems in endorsing terrorists who kill people everyday but their fragile sentiments would get hurt when they see their Muslim brother have a glass of whiskey in a mere advertisement.

4. Parveen brings a dash of salt

The Supreme Court summoned singer Abrarul Haq because one his songs contained the following verse.

Ne Parveen tu bari namkeen
Uper sey tu miskeen
Andar sey tu bari shauqeen

5. MQM, Immy K and Sita White

The reference had been filed by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) under Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution and the Public Representation Act, 1978 against Imran Khan alleging him of having a daughter with Anna Luise alias Sita White, born out of wedlock.

Perhaps, it was the MQM’s first attempt to screen parliamentarians to make sure only the pious ones could have admission rights in assembly.

6. How dare Justice Bhagwandas be ‘Hindu’

The petition said no Non-Muslim judge is authorised to administer oath to the president of Pakistan nor does the constitution assign constitutional obligations to a non Muslim judge in place of a Muslim judge.

This is a no-brainer. Pakistan was made in the name of Islam. Can’t Muslims differentiate between good and evil? How could someone named ‘‘Bhagwan’-das be pious?

7. Petition to end the trial of assassin Malik Mumtaz Qadri

Mr Awan in his appeal had maintained that Mumtaz Qadri had killed Mr Taseer because no criminal case was registered against the governor for criticising the blasphemy laws in public. The petition further read that Pakistani law states that capital punishment will be handed to those who blaspheme. Apparently “Chief Justice Mumtaz Qadri” had just awarded Taseer his due death sentence.

8. Petition seeking to empower army chief

Tehreek-i-Inqilab Pakistan Chairman Advocate Rana Ilmuddin Ghazi filed the petition, contending that the army had been unable to take prompt action to stop the American operation in Abbottabad because the power to take such a decision rested with President Asif Ali Zardari and not Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. Empowering COAS Kayani and assigning him the powers of the president and prime minister would definitely curb terrorism and the mess this nation is going through, but keep in mind, the petitioner was not supporting dictatorship.

9. Stop telling the truth

A case filed by a PML-Q MPA sought for an order to stop media from airing news related to fake degrees of legislators. Apparently, such news had an adverse impact on the masses and in the international community. Why does the media have problems with someone’s degree anyway? Are they unaware of the fact that “a degree is a degree whether fake or original?”

10. Rehman Malik sued over incorrect recitation of Quranic verses

A constitutional petition was filed in the Supreme Court seeking the disqualification of Interior Minister Senator Rehman Malik over incorrect recitation of Quranic verses. I wonder how this country will progress when we have ministers who can’t recite verses from the Holy Quran. Surely, this is a skill required to stop suicide bombers.

11. An Ahmadi on TV

The petitioner held that on June 2, 2010, Express News aired  Point-Blank with Luqman, in which a spiritual leader of the Ahmadi group was also invited, “which hurt my and millions of fellow Muslims’ religious sensibilities.”

Pakistan belongs to the Muslims who form its majority.  Apparently, no other sect or religion should be allowed to appear on TV otherwise it would hurt the majority Muslims’ sentiments.

12. Musharraf who?

Former President Rafiq Tarar filed a petition in the Lahore High Court (LHC) seeking to remove Pervez Musharraf’s name from the official record of presidents. The case was that Musharraf was a dictator and assumed power unconstitutionally.

Everything he did was unacceptable (except, of course the oaths the assembly took from him and the infrastructure, development and technology he brought to this nation.)

tanzeel.ahmad

Tanzeel Ahmad

A UAE based marketing professional who is interested in politics and cultural issues. He blogs at www.tanzeel.wordpress.com

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • http://about.me/waisybabu Waisybabu

    This popular emoticon summarizes my comment:

    O_oRecommend

  • Mansur

    Musharaf give Development and technology to this nation:D
    Dat says it all,
    i must say poor attempt..Recommend

  • Dr. Ali Ahmed

    Wailay loog, wailay shoak,

    i wonder why no one ever filed a petition that we r having al haram meals for last 70 years.. since the content “E” is not fit for Muslims and Jews ‘ consumption.

    wonder why no one ever filed that negating the preachings and teachings of Prophet Muhammed PBUH, is disrespecting him, which is Blasphemy..

    wonder why all mullahs r riding on the cars “toyota, Humvee, Nissan, Mitsubishi, mercedes, BMW, Audi,” etc, that r all “blasphemers”…

    and wonder why no one is willing to file the biggest blasphemy case against all those who are protecting their lives by the guns manufactured by the Kufar, while denying the existence of Allah and the fact it is He who has and will take your life, will protect you will your death..

    but.. i guess no one gonna do that, since we all are the “Blasphemers

    FYI: hate people who would watch the whole of the porn movie and at the end will say, its Al Haram, against our values and bla bla bla .. ;)Recommend

  • Moazzam Salim

    The list looked OK till the last one. It is strange really how we invent things and myths to support our beloved dictators. Some people cant get enough of the rogue generals it seems. A petition that i would have liked to see in the list is probably still pending and it is about banning of the Facebook. The interesting part is that the Petitioner, a famous lawyer, himself uses the FB in a big way having around 2000 friends there and has also set up a local version of the FB which reportedly has around 400,000 members. It is a nice way of silencing the competition. Recommend

  • http://ovais-envisage.blogspot.com/ Muhammad Ovais

    No doubt we always have something to laugh about in Pakistan!Recommend

  • parvez

    Humorous trivia. You bungled the last one.Recommend

  • A

    haha my favorite is the one against Imran Khan, love how MQM does the silliest things. Wasim Akram’s one is pretty funny too!Recommend

  • Fahad Raza

    I really thought it would have something but its just a random article. Who cares??Recommend

  • Mueed

    Everything he did was unacceptable (except, of course the oaths the assembly took from him and the infrastructure, development and technology he brought to this nation.)
    LolzRecommend

  • Yousuf

    WHAT. THE. F*.Recommend

  • nafisa

    Ha ha Ha….My WORD!!!!
    Is this for real?

    Like seriously? Is it?
    O_oRecommend

  • http://www.tanzeel.wordpress.com Tanzeel

    You guys may read rest of the petitions here.

    http://tanzeel.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/bizarre-petitions/Recommend

  • Rehman

    “the infrastructure, development and technology he brought to this nation ”

    WTF ..

    Infrastructure?suicide bomb cultue is the gift of Musharraf!!Recommend

  • hasan

    “Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.” another nice write-up tanzeel bhai;-)Recommend

  • Bushra Ahmed

    Its amazing that when the litigant is truly aggrieved no one bothers; even the judges do a superb “jhatka” with a genuine petition but these “masala dar” petitions (which should be dismissed without wasting the precious time of court) suits to their “mizaj” and entertained a lot.Recommend

  • Saad Durrani

    I am sad. So sad. This one is such a waste of space.Recommend

  • http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/images/2011/Apr/04-19-11-Bernanke%27s_Box-1.png Moise

    Sonny, easy on defamation of Muslims. Except paid fake Taliban TTP members and AlQaeda agents from foreign intelligence agencies I dont see any real Muslim endorsing terrorism. If you want to push your hate agenda try tabloids or we can sue for sowing hate. Capisce?Recommend

  • A.B.

    Hilarious. Wondering where do you get these ideas from?Recommend

  • raheela

    excellent and funny.molvis are just so funny pplRecommend

  • M Karim Ahmed

    The writer deserves appreciation for writing such blog.This shows that we have plenty of time to waste on senseless issues.And i am surprised to know that our legal system is unable to stop filing of such petition.Recommend

  • Ahmed

    although the title mentions about petitions being filed….why i am getting the impression that the article itself implies that judges are wasting time on these petty issues….anyone can file a petition about anything…it is for the court to decide to pursue it…and i think they havent pursued any of the above casesRecommend

  • Naveed

    Extremely biased !

    Get a life dude..Recommend

  • Umar tariq

    Thanks God they only filed a petition for meera
    Coz if it would be commission then there will be too many contestant.
    Disaster!Recommend

  • Ravindra Verma

    6. How dare Justice Bhagwandas be ‘Hindu’
    .
    As a Hindu, let me ‘return the favour’ to Mr. Shahid Orakzai,
    the petitioner who moved the Supreme Court of Pakistan,
    against the appointment of Rana Bhagwandas as acting chief justice
    of Pakistan through a constitutional petition, in 2007.
    .
    Presidents of India >
    Zakir Hussain. Muhammad Hidayatullah (Acting).
    Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
    .
    Vice-Presidents of India >
    Zakir Hussain. Muhammad Hidayatullah.
    Mohammad Hamid Ansari.
    .
    Indian Army > Major General Amin Naik (From “Maqboza Kashmir”)
    There are many more but … you get the point .
    .
    First Minister for Education (Post 1947) >
    Maulana Azad (aka ‘The Showboy of the Congress’ per M.A.Jinnah)
    .
    All of the above are just a smattering / sprinkling of Indians,
    who coincidentally happened to be Muslims …
    and rose to their office and discharged their duties with great dedication.
    They being capable individuals, shouldered a huge responsibility,
    for a poor and populous country.
    .
    Their courage was doubtless enhanced, because of their patriotism,
    but also because they were good individuals … because they were good Muslims.
    But it wasn’t necessary of them to be Muslims to rise to the position they did.
    Their values mattered for their qualification for an office of national importance.
    Not their faith. That was their faith and between them and their creator.
    .
    So why can’t Bhagwandas be a ‘Hindu’,
    and rise to the highest seat in the Pakistani administration?
    Why can’t any Pakistani ‘Hindu’ who is equally capable?
    Not just the Pakistani Supreme Court but in any of the branches of government?

    .
    The only high office to which a Muslim has not been elected to is that of the
    Prime Minister of India. And a lot of this is due to the fact that the poison of
    communalism and the heavy weight of dead history is upon us.
    But as our economy changes the slant of election politics will switch from the
    bread and better to policymaking and economy.
    .
    And then, hopefully in my own living years,
    India will have its ‘post-communal’ phase … much like the US has a ‘post-race’ phase now.
    The Prime Minister of India, who coincidentally happens to be a Muslim …
    will be independent India’s ‘Obama’ phenomenon. Recommend

  • http://www.tanzeel.wordpress.com Tanzeel

    @Ravindra Verma:
    I don’t support Shahid Orakzai perhaps this is the reason I have included petition on Bhagwan Das in my weird petition list but your comparison isn’t relevant either since Pakistan and India are two different countries with different constitutions, India claims to be secular and maintain a secular constitution unlike ‘Islamic Republic of Pakistan’. We can only challenge Orakzai on technical grounds.Recommend

  • Mirza

    The problem is Pakistani courts especially the high courts and Supreme Court. In a poor country like Pakistan the SC starts the cases with a 17 member bench on some issues. While in the oldest democracy and the richest country of the world, there cannot be more than a total of 9 judges in the SC of USA. Most high courts would not even accept these frivolous and silly petitions for hearing. However, the superior court judges in Pakistan kind of wait for them, while appeals for murder and other important cases are languishing for decades. They have too much time and too many judges doing nothing important. In each of your examples the petitioner should be heavily fined and petition summarily dismissed. Recommend

  • Saira

    Very entertaining :DRecommend

  • Word Life

    In Support of number 11

    “… during the programme, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (Qadiani) openly described himself as “Ahmadi Muslim”, and thereby made a mockery of the anti-Qadiani ordinance and disparaged the constitution of Pakistan…”

    Read Pakistan Penal Code

    298-B. Misuse of epithets, descriptions and titles, etc., reserved for certain holy personages or places:
    (1) Any person of the Quadiani group or the Lahori group (who call themselves ‘Ahmadis’ or by any other name who by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation-
    (a) refers to or addresses, any person, other than a Caliph or companion of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), as “Ameer-ul-Mumineen”, “Khalifatul- Mumineen”, Khalifa-tul-Muslimeen”, “Sahaabi” or “Razi Allah Anho”;
    (b) refers to, or addresses, any person, other than a wife of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), as “Ummul-Mumineen”;
    (c) refers to, or addresses, any person, other than a member of the family “Ahle-bait” of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), as “Ahle-bait”; or
    (d) refers to, or names, or calls, his place of worship a “Masjid”;
    shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years, and shall also be liable to fine.

    (2) Any person of the Qaudiani group or Lahori group (who call themselves “Ahmadis” or by any other name) who by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation refers to the mode or form of call to prayers followed by his faith as “Azan”, or recites Azan as used by the Muslims, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years, and shall also be liable to fine.

    298-C. Person of Quadiani group, etc., calling himself a Muslim or preaching or propagating his faith:
    Any person of the Quadiani group or the Lahori group (who call themselves ‘Ahmadis’ or by any other name), who directly or indirectly, poses himself as a Muslim, or calls, or refers to, his faith as Islam, or preaches or propagates his faith, or invites others to accept his faith, by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representations, or in any manner whatsoever outrages the religious feelings of Muslims shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine.Recommend

  • Ozymandias

    Two things: First, the JUI ‘petition’ wasn’t actually filed, so shouldn’t be on this list. Secondly: “Muslims have no problems in endorsing terrorists who kill people everyday but their fragile sentiments would get hurt when they see their Muslim brother have a glass of whiskey in a mere advertisement.” Wow. Generalise much?Recommend

  • A.P.

    Really, Dr. Ali Ahmad – wailey log wailey shoaq

    but still i was expecting more then this. Apparently our most bizarre cases are mediocre tooRecommend

  • R

    few ideas to add this list of law suits. great article though.

    Rehman Malik:
    Right after PNS MEHRAN attack he accused the terrorists of wearing star wars clothing. How dare he watch movies – that too from America? Good Muslims do not indulge in kafir entertainment.

    Wasim Akram:
    Giving bowling tips to Yusuf Pathan and Zaheer Khan. That is coaching ‘misled muslim’ players from enemy country.

    PM Gilani:
    Why is he wearing western suits? Foul. Against Pakistani pride and tehzeeb.

    Veena Malik:
    How dare she expose a Pakistani cricketer of match fixing? Good Muslims protect all Muslims no matter what.

    How dare she show up in India hanging around with enemy actors? Izzat ka sawaal hai.

    Sikh Cadets in Pakistani Army:
    Hai toba. How can a non Muslim – a lesser being, lead the pure GHAZIS to battle? Expel him!

    Pervez Hoodbhoy and Sherry REHMAN:
    Always sounding too logical with smart analysis. Time to file a lawsuit on grounds of maligning the state.

    Few appointments desperately needed to the Supreme court:
    ZAID HAMID
    GENERAL GUL
    SHIREEN MAZARI
    IKRAM SEHGAL
    AHMAD QUIRESHI
    Fazlur REHMAN

    We need true guardians of law!!!!Recommend

  • Haider

    @Ravindra Verma: No need to be that emotional Ravindra. We all know that Justice Bhagwandas has so far proved to be a responsible judge. Hindus have every right to prosper in Pakistan and Bhagwandas is an excellent example. Those who are filing such petations are idiots; and thank God, these idiots are just handful. Recommend