The LHC Chief Justice Ijazul Ahsan has constituted a division bench to decide a number of petitions challenging a policy of Lahore Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) that restricts students of below 12 years of age to get them enrolled for Class IX.

The division bench comprising Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh and Justice Shahid Karim is likely to take up the petitions in couple of days.

Dr Akhtar Hussain and other parents filed these petitions against the education board for denying their children registration for Class IX for being younger than the age prescribed under Rule 1(A) of Chapter 19 of the Board Calendar.

The petitioners pleaded that the impugned rule was misconceived as based on a misconception of the statutory status of Punjab Education Code (PEC) and misreading of provisions of Punjab Free and Compulsory Education Act 2014.

They said the PEC is just a set of instructions and guidelines and its clause 29, which prescribes five years as minimum age for the admission to Class-1, cannot have an overriding effect on the free and compulsory education law, which prescribes no such minimum age limit.

The petitioners stated that the impugned rule is unconstitutional as it conflicts with the provisions of Article 25-A of the Constitution that promotes the cause of education and provides all citizens equal right to education.

They say the impugned rule does not affect underage students of O-Level that is a clear violation of constitutional right of matriculation’s students guaranteed under the Article 25 of the Constitution.

The petitioners-parents pleaded that there was no logic or public good in restraining their children from continuing their education and for punishing them for reason of being underage by few months.

Therefore, the petitioners requested the court to strike down the illogical policy of the BISE for being an unconstitutional and allow the underage qualified children for registration in Class IX.

PM’s foreign tours: The Lahore High Court Monday ordered for submission of details of foreign visits of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and expenditures incurred on these tours.

Justice Sayed Mansoor Ali Shah directed the foreign and finance ministry to submit these details until tomorrow (Wednesday).

Petitioner Barrister Sayyed Javed Iqbal Jafree said there were no medicine available in public hospitals for common man, the county was sinking in foreign debts but the prime minister got his medical treatment abroad on public money. He said unfortunately the head of the government could not establish such hospital where he could go for his own medical treatment.

He submitted that on PM treatment abroad the public money was spent. He said that taxpayers’ money had been constantly used by the PM and his family on lavish foreign tours. He also requested that the government should be restrained from media

advertisements for the promotion of the prime minister and his party.

film: The Lahore High Court on Monday ordered for production until Tuesday (today) of permit earlier granted by the Punjab government for exhibition of Pakistani film ‘Maalik. ’Justice Shams Mehmood Mirza was hearing petitions filed by Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and Opposition Leader in Punjab Assembly Mian Mehmood-ur-Rasheed and an advocate Munir Ahmad.

The ministry of information also submitted reply claiming that it had right to ban exhibition of a film and its action against “Maalik” was not illegal.

Petitioners’ counsel said the ministry of information, broadcasting and heritage through a notification on April 27 had imposed a ban on exhibition of this film. He submitted that earlier the film censor board had given approval for exhibition of this film.

He said that after 18th Amendment, the government had no authority to impose a ban on any film and the matter pertaining to motion pictures had been devolved to provinces. He pleaded that the film was on top of corruption issue which was hot in the prevailing circumstances after Panama Leaks and it would not create any unrest among the masses.

He submitted that film neither was against the sovereignty of the state nor social values even then the government had banned exhibition of film in cinemas across the country. He said it was high time when the people should be informed about the evils of corruption.

He said film was always used to create awareness against evils. He submitted that the film was based on social norms and values in our society and against menace of corruption. He said that movie or drama made for the social development couldn’t be banned.