ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has cautioned the government over the misuse of cyber crimes laws to harass or intimidate its activists.
PTI Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi visited the headquarters of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) after reported that some young individuals including social media activists had been called for questioning by the agency.
The PTI leader speaking to media said that cyber crime laws should not be misused while the PTI has no intention to impede in the working of institutions. He said that some of the young social media activists summoned to FIA were members of the PTI, as well as other political parties.
Qureshi said that he discussed with the activists which institution or organisation have they defamed on social media. However, the youngsters told him that they were patriotic citizens and were not involved in any such activities.
Qureshi said he told FIA authorities to act with caution in interrogation, and release the activisits if they are innocent. He said that it seemed that they were detained over the Dawn Leaks issue which was recently settled between the government and the Pakistan Army.
He said that PTI had utmost respect for the armed forces of Pakistan. He hailed the sacrifices of the army. He said that PTI chairman Imran Khan had also said that freedom of speech and expression are their fundamental rights and that social media activists should act with caution.
The FIA had called PTI worker Salar Khan Sultanzai for questioning after which his laptop was confiscated. He was working on the cyber wing of the PTI.
Imran Khan has accused the government of using the cyber-crime law to persecute political activists. He tweeted, “Government abusing cybercrime law to politically victimize PTI social media activists by threatening/ arresting them. Unacceptable in a democracy.”
The government has warned to take action against those defaming institutions including the Pakistan Army on social media. Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan had ordered the FIA’s cyber-crime wing to take action against using social media for slanderous and negative propaganda to tarnish the reputation and respect of the armed forces and other constitutional institutions.