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July 16, 2020

Vengeful action against Editor-in-Chief slammed

Top Story

July 16, 2020

RAWALPINDI: The countrywide protest of the workers of Geo and Jang Group against the illegal and unjustified arrest of Editor-in-Chief of the group, Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, continued on Wednesday.

The workers of Geo and Jang Group, along with journalist organizations, representatives of the civil society and political workers, completed 124 days and their morale was high and vowed to continue their protest till the release of Editor-in-Chief and achieving the freedom of media.

The protest outside the Jang Building in Rawalpindi, which has already been declared as the Freedom Street, was addressed by Chairman Editorial Committee of Jang Rawalpindi Hanif Khalid, Chief Reporter Jang Rawalpindi Rana Ghulam Qadir, senior member of Editorial Committee of Jang Rawalpindi Abbas Alam, Magazine Editor Jang Rawalpindi Farooq Aqdas, Naddem Khan, Malik Nusrat, Munir Shah, Amjad Ali Abbassi, Azhar Sultan and other workers of Geo, Jang and The News, who all said that the arrest of Editor-in-Chief of Geo and Jang Group Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was a violation of human rights.

They said that the arrest of Editor-in-Chief of Geo and Jang Group is a part of well planned conspiracy but the workers stood united to foil all the conspiracies against the group. They said the narrative of Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman for the freedom of media has now become a national narrative and all the journalist organizations, human rights activists, lawyers, traders, labourers and all the segments of the society stood for this narrative. They said the editor-in-chief had always raised his voice for human rights and now he was being targeted and victimized in violation of human rights. They called for the release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman.

KARACHI: Jamaat-e-Islami leader Hafiz Naeem-ur-Rehman on Wednesday said that the federal government’s vengeful moves against the Jang-Geo Group and its Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman have left many questions unanswered.

Condemning the detention of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, he said the government was using the National Accountability Bureau as a tool to bash its opponents and those who highlighted its wrongdoings. He said that due to the government policies, the country had already plunged into darkness but Prime Minister Imran Khan and his cabinet were only interested in their vendetta.

Former Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan lawmaker Jamal Ahmed said that the Jang-Geo Group has always promoted the truth and that is why it has remained on the target of people in power. Ahmed demanded immediate release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman from prison and said that the MQM-P’s Organization for Restoration of Committee (ORC) will continue to support the Jang-Geo Action Committee’s protest campaign against the federal government’s vengeful campaign against the independent media.

He remarked that the government flouted the law and the Constitution by illegally taking Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman into custody in a 34-year-old bogus transaction matter. He said that the Jang-Geo Group was the most trusted news outlet in the country and published the world’s largest Urdu newspaper Jang. He added that the government wanted to control this biggest media house to promote its narrative on this and that is why it was trying to blackmail Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman through different tactics. He said that a free press was the guarantee of democracy in the country.

Rights activist and columnist Nazia Ali said that the government was trying to suppress dissent in the country, which was not only a draconian approach but a dangerous move in the long run because it hurt the country. She said the prime minister's policies had made the lives of people in the country a hell and they were praying for this government to go away soon. She said that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was paying for his only sin of promoting the truth. She added that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman had suffered the loss of his brother and sister during his incarceration yet the government was not showing any humanity in his case. She demanded his immediate release from the prison.

PESHAWAR: The workers of Jang Group continued their protest against the arrest of Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman on Wednesday. Holding banners and placards inscribed with slogans in favour of their demands, they urged the government to release Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and withdraw cases against him forthwith.

Criticising the government and the National Accountability Bureau, the protesters said that the rulers wanted to suppress the voice of an independent media and opposition. The protesters said that journalists could not be prevented from speaking the truth.

Naib Ameer Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) Youth Wing, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Shah Jehan Afridi, visited the camp to extend solidarity with protesting workers and condemn the illegal action of the sitting rulers.

Terming the government action against Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman as illegal and unconstitutional, he said that the voice of media could not be suppressed. The JI leader said Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was being punished for raising voice for justice and highlighting the truth.

He said that his party would raise voice against the injustices of rulers and for the release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman. He asked the government to release Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and withdraw the cases against him.