Gilgit, November 25: An Anti-Terrorism Court in Gilgit, the administrative headquarters of Gilgit-Baltistan region, has sentenced the owner of Jang Group and GEO TV Network, Mir Shakilur Rehman to 26 years in prison. He has also been asked to pay 13 lac (1.3million) rupees to the government as fine. Others sentenced for similar years in prison include anchor Shaista Lodhi and actress Veena Malik.
The three have been sentenced after hearings spanning for six months. None of the accused appeared in the court during this period, despite of the court’s orders. These people had been named in a case pertaining to blasphemy based on a controversial programme on GEO TV, during a morning show where Veena was a guest. Her husband, Asad, has also been sentenced to 26 years in imprisonment.
The judge, Raja Shahbaz, who is an administrative judge of the Anti-Terrorism Court, has directed the provincial governments to arrest these four people and imprison them. The Court has also directed the court to snatch the properties and Passport of Mir Shakilur Rehman.
It is pertinent to note that Mir Shakilur Rehman, who owns a media empire in Pakistan, lives in the Middle East from where he runs a large number of channels and publications.