PTI activist sentenced to five years behind bars over anti-army campaign


LAHORE – A political activist of former ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has been sentenced to five years in jail for maligning the army and its senior officials through social media accounts.

The stern punishment was announced by a district and sessions court in Faisalabad that sent the political activist to five years in jail after being convicted of being part of the anti-army campaign. The court also slapped a fine of Rs0.25 million on Sikandar.

Sikandar, a resident of the east-central province, was booked by Federal Investigators under Section 20/24 (C) of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016 along with 500/505 of the Pakistan Penal Code.

The verdict comes months after a high-level probe was launched against social media activists who malign Pakistan Army and martyrs of the Lasbela helicopter crash in which several top officials including Lieutenant General Sarfaraz embraced martyrdom.

The investigators claimed that the culprit shared a series of posts on social media against armed forces officials after the unfortunate incident, linking it with creating anarchy among the populace.

It was also learned that Mr Sikandar himself admitted being a political worker of Imran Khan-led PTI while the evidence also supports his stance. In the probe, he was found guilty of creating a dispute about the senior leadership of armed forces, the verdict cited.

In August last year, a six-member inquiry committee was formed which includes members from ISI, IB, and other officials to probe the highly obnoxious campaign, which prompted a strong reaction from Pakistan army spokesperson who called it regretful.

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