A two-day special session of the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) opened on Tuesday with discussions focusing on the proposed Hindus and Christians’ marriage bills.
The advisory body also sought the draft bill – prepared for the marriage of non-Muslims – from the Law and justice ministry.
“Islam is not a hurdle in the way to anyone, who believes in any other faith,” said the CII chairman Maulana Mohammad Khan Shirani, while talking to media persons.
He said a person has the right to choose any Sharia, but deviation from the faith is punishable.
CII will take up today (Wednesday) the issue related to role of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) in checking “unethical and objectionable content” aired by broadcast media outlets.
The council will also deliberate on the objectionable content in Geo TV’s morning show aired last week, and also review the action taken against it by Pemra.
In today’s meeting, the CII will also discuss the controversial Pakistan Protection Ordinance (PPO), which has been opposed by a majority of political and religious parties in parliament.
One of the CII members Maulana Tahir Ashrafi said the council had written to Pemra even before emergence of the ongoing media controversy and asked it to apprise the council about its mandate and role played over the time to keep a check on the electronic media.
“Pemra had responded to the CII query through a letter, which will be examined in Wednesday’s meeting,” he said.
He said every issue pertaining to Pemra would be discussed and recommendations would be given in this regard.
“There is no doubt that some channels air unethical programmes, which should not be broadcast in an Islamic country,” he said.
The council also condemned the resolution passed by Sindh Assembly to dissolve the CII. The provincial assembly had passed the resolution after the council’s recommended to allow men to wed for second or third time without seeking permission from the first wife.
“The CII is a constitutional body and formed under the Constitution and any resolution or demand to dissolve it means rebellion against the Constitution itself,” said Maulana Mohammad Hanif Jalandhri, one of the council members.
“I think that the resolution of the Sindh Assembly is not against the CII, but against the country’s therefore we condemn it,” he maintained.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 21st, 2014.