The Lahore High Court on Friday ordered Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan to strictly abstain from making any statement or comment on the nuclear programme of Pakistan and abide by the agreement he earlier singed with the federal government, pledging to remain silent about atomic secrets of the country.
However, the court held that Dr AQ Khan, being a free citizen, can meet his friends and family members or move anywhere inside the country under a security protocol as he knows the secrets of the country.
A division bench headed by Justice Ijaz Ahmad Chaudhry passed this order while disposing of a contempt of court petition filed by Dr AQ Khan against the federal government on the alleged violations of the court’s orders regarding his free movement.
Besides moving the contempt petition, Dr AQ Khan had written a letter to Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry stating the government was not allowing him to move freely as per the court’s orders and he was living in a prison-like environment as even his family members and friends were not being permitted to meet him.
On this, the court had sought reply from the federal government. On Friday, a deputy attorney general on behalf of the federal government informed the court that over the last two months as many as 56 times Dr Khan passed through medical check-up and was allowed to meet his friends and others 290 times. The court was told that AQ Khan had been giving interviews to the media on the sensitive nuclear issues as well as on the subject that directly related of the vital interests and integrity of the state. This had created problems and embarrassment for the government, he said.
The government prayed to the court that Dr Khan be stopped from giving interviews to the media in the larger national interests.
The court restricted Dr Khan from giving interviews or making comment on the nuclear programme of the country. The court, however, directed the government to abide by the agreement earlier made free movement of Dr Khan under security protocol.
The application and letter of AQ Khan turned against him on the report of the federal government.