Islamabad: “The jurisdiction of our constitution does not apply beyond Pakistan’s boundaries,” said Federal Information Minister Pervez Rasheed in a TV show on Friday.
Mr. Rasheed was responding to a number of questions asked by the show host pertaining to a verdict issued some days ago by the Anti-Terrorism Court in Gilgit against GEO television and Jang Group owner Mir Shakeel Ur Rehman, celebrated actress Veena malik and her husband Asad Malik, and GEO TV’s morning show host Shaista Lodhi.
When asked why doesn’t the ruling from the Gilgit court apply to Pakistan despite the fact that the people of Gilgit-Baltistan carry Pakistani passports, the Federal Information Minister said the jurisdiction of Pakistan’s constitution does not apply beyond the country’s boundaries.
The verdict by the anti-terrorism court and ensuing media debate has brought questions about the legal and constitutional status and rights of Gilgit-Baltistan to the fore.
Meanwhile, legal and constitutional experts in Pakistan are questioning and challenging the verdict issued by the court in Gilgit, saying it cannot be applied on a constitutional citizen of Pakistan. Experts also think that such political debates and controversies can lead to political mileage for some political parties in the upcoming elections in Gilgit Baltistan. Nationalist groups can move more vigorously on their campaigns if the court verdict is not implemented by the directed areas administrations, say legal experts.