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August 12, 2020

Protests against arrest continue

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August 12, 2020

KARACHI/LAHORE/PESHAWAR: Speaking and writing the truth has become a “greater sin” in Pakistan reflected by the unduly long imprisonment of the Jang-Geo Group's Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakilur- Rahman, who was giving due space to the oftenoverlooked concerns of the labour class in the Group broadcasts and publications, said trade union leader Gul Rehman on Tuesday. Gul Rehman, the Sindh president for the National Trade Union Federation, was speaking to trade unionists, journalists, civil society and political activists who had converged near the offices of Jang- Geo to protest the long illegal and unjust detention of Group's Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman near the Jang Group’s offices in Karachi. The labour leader said that Prime Minister Imran Khan's mismanagement of economy has made hundreds of thousands of people unemployed and multiplied the inflation to an extent that it has become virtually impossible for a common man to have two square meals. He said that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was being subjected to sheer harassment for defying the government’s strong arm tactics to micromanage the group’s independent and bold editorial policies. He reiterated the labour movement’s support to the Jang-Geo Action Committee in their struggle to seek honourable release of Rahman and against the wide-ranging media gags.

The All Pakistan Newspapers Employees Confederation secretary general Shakil Yamin Kanga, The News Employees Union general secretary Dara Zafar, Javed Press Employees Union general secreatry Rana Yusuf, Rotary International Indus Valley’s representative leaders Sultan Mehmood Tajwani, Abdul Majeed Tajwani and Saleem Ahmed Chandio also addressed the demonstrators.

LAHORE: Media workers, including senior journalists, continuing their protest against the unlawful detention of Jang-Geo media Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, on Tuesday demanded his immediate and honourable release.

Gathered at the protest camp set up outside the Geo News office on the Davis Road, the demonstrators chanted slogans against Prime Minister Imran Khan and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and termed the detention of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman a result of the NAB-Niazi nexus.

Senior journalist Zaheer Anjum said what happened outside the NAB office in Lahore on Tuesday had shown that people were getting fed up and losing their patience because of selective accountability. He said journalists had vowed to continue their protest against the unlawful detention till the release of Geo-Jang media Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman. Shahab Ansari said that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was being victimised as he was the torchbearer of freedom of the press in the country.

PESHAWAR: The Peshawar Press Club (PPC) and Khyber Union of Journalists (KhUJ) members on Tuesday continued the protest against the arrest of the Jang-Geo Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and sought his early release.

They gathered outside the offices of the Daily Jang, The News and Geo TV to register the protest. PPC President Syed Bukhar Shah, KhUJ Vice-President Rizwan Sheikh, Daily Jang Resident Editor Arshad Aziz Malik, Shakeel Farman Ali, Farmanullah Jan, Shah Zaman, Qaisar Khan, Gulzar Khan, Imdad Ali Qazalbash and others addressed the protesters.

The protesting media workers said Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman had been behind bars since March 12 on cooked-up charges. The speakers flayed the government for victimizing Mir Shakil who had earned respect over the years for promoting independent journalism. They said the arrest of Mir Shakil-ur Rahman was illegal, unconstitutional as had been argued by legal experts and people from other segments of the society who had visited the protest camp.