Directing the federal government to block all blasphemous material available on Google and YouTube, the Lahore High Court (LHC) asked it to file a case in the International Court for Justice (ICJ) against anti-Islam movie that sparked outrage across the globe.

The LHC issued ruling while hearing of a petition filed by Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) leaders seeking a ban on blasphemous material available on the internet and one filed by Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) leader Hafiz Saaed pertaining to the sacrilegious movie .

A single-member bench of Justice Ijazula Ahsan ordered the federal government to file its reply by September 8; the next date of hearing.  The court in the second ruling issued a notice to the federal government to submit a reply within three weeks.

Justice Saghir Ahmed Qadri admitted the petition for regular hearing. Advocate AK Dogar, the counsel for the petitioners, submitted that US President Obama said in a speech to the United Nations (UN) General Assembly that he condemned the anti-Islam movie but he strongly defended the US constitutional protection of freedom of expression.

The petitioner said that mere denial of the holocaust is a crime in many western countries as German author and historian Ernst Zundel spent seven years of his life behind the bars for expressing his views about the holocaust.

He further said that the foreign policy of Pakistan needs to be restructured and regulated in the light of Article 40 of the Constitution which envisages strengthening bonds with Muslim world and promoting international peace.

Hafiz Saeed prayed that the relationship of ‘absolute servility’ between Pakistan and US should be declared contrary to the fundamental rights of “dignity of man” enshrined in Article 14 of the Constitution.

He further prayed that the government be directed to initiate proceedings before ICJ for violation of Article 18 of the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” and the profane movie makers be prosecuted and convicted for a crime against humanity.

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