Pak govt seeks court ban on A Q Khan's free movement

Lahore: The Pakistan government today asked a court to bar disgraced nuclear scientist A Q Khan from moving around freely, meeting people and giving interviews to the media in the interest of national security.

Senior lawyer Ahmer Bilal Soofi filed a petition in this regard on behalf of the government in the Lahore High Court.

Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry issued a notice seeking Khan's response to the petition at the next hearing scheduled for January 25.

"Mr Khan should be prevented from giving interviews, meeting people and moving around without security clearance," the petition said.

It sought an immediate ban on Khan's interaction with the media.

Khan was placed under house arrest in early 2004 after he confessed to running a nuclear proliferation network on state-run television.

Following a secret understanding between Khan and the government last year, a court eased some of the restrictions imposed on him.

However, Khan has filed several petitions seeking further easing of restrictions on his movement.

Recent revelations made by the Western media on the basis of a letter written by Khan to a journalist have caused embarrassment to the Pakistan government, which insists that the scientist's case is a "closed chapter".