The Peshawar High Court accepted 109 petitions from Pakistani women seeking Pakistan Origin Cards (POCs) for their Afghan spouses, and ordered the federal government to proceed with their cases according to rules. The detailed judgement will be released later. The Citizenship Act allows Pakistani citizenship for foreign wives of Pakistani husbands, but not vice versa. The Supreme Court summoned the Attorney General to decide if a three-judge bench or a larger bench should hear petitions regarding mass deportation of Afghan nationals from Pakistan. The court also noted that petitions under Article 184(3) of the Constitution should be heard by a bench of at least five judges. The court considered Pakistan’s international treaties and questioned if the caretaker government could ignore them, while advocates argued that the government was deporting Afghans despite many seeking asylum. Petitions urged the court to stop the government from detaining or deporting individuals with certain documents. The case was postponed until the next week due to constitutional interpretation concerns.

Source: Dawn, December 2nd, 2023

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