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National Assembly passed the Official Secrets (Amendment) Bill to amend Official Secrets Act

The National Assembly passed the Official Secrets (Amendment) Bill on Monday, 2023 after making some alterations to the original draft — just like the Senate had a day earlier.

The most significant alteration made in the now-adopted bill was the removal of a clause that would have granted intelligence agencies the power to arrest suspects or conduct searches without warrants. This amendment was made by a Senate committee during the bill’s vetting process.

Another change was made to clause 5 of the bill, which earlier stated: “[A] person may be presumed to have been in communication with an enemy or a foreign agent if he has, either within or without Pakistan visited the address of a foreign agent or consorted or associated with the enemy or a foreign agent…”