The Supreme Court ruled that the federal government failed to make Urdu an official language.
A petition for the use of Urdu as the official language was heard by a three-judge panel, with acting Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial serving as the bench’s president.
Justice Bandial said, “we shall lose our identity if we don’t learn our mother tongue and national language.” He went on to say that “in my opinion, we should learn Persian and Arabic, just like our forefathers.”According to the acting CJP, the Supreme Court had ordered in 2015 that Urdu be made an official language, but the federal government failed to follow through on the decision.
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“Article 251 of the Constitution includes the mother language along with the regional languages,” the acting chief judge observed when he asked the Punjab government why Punjabi (as an official language) had not been introduced in the province.
Lawyer Kokab Iqbal has filed a contempt of court petition for not using Urdu language, while citizen Dr Sami has also filed a contempt of court petition against the Punjab government for not adopting Punjabi (as an official language) in the province.
Appeals to the federal and Punjab governments were sent by the apex court, which then postponed the hearing for a month. Earlier this month, Prime Minister Imran Khan issued an order for all official meetings to be held in Urdu in order to show respect and develop the national language.
According to a statement released by the PM’s office in June, “The prime minister has been pleased to demand that henceforth all programmes events/ceremonies, organised for the prime minister, would be done in the national (Urdu) language.”
“Further essential measures to follow the foregoing orders of the Prime Minister will be done by those concerned appropriately,” it stated. According to reports, Prime Minister also stated that he was “dedicated to the promotion and appropriate respect of the national language.”