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August 15, 2020

Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s arrest: Journalists, workers continue protest

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August 15, 2020

LAHORE/PESHAWAR: Workers of Jang, The News and Geo staged a protest demanding Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s release from NAB’s custody.

Student leaders and civil society representatives joined them in their demand for the release of the largest media CEO and Editor-in-Chief Jang. They chanted slogans such as “Release Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, We will fight until media gets freedom, Long live Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and Long live freedom of media.” They carried placards calling superior court to intervene and break the government-NAB nexus.

Zaheer Anjum said 73 years had passed the country’s economy was on crutches, unable to sustain without aid. What the government is doing is becoming a political problem. People want freedom, employment, security and peace which the government has been unable to provide to the masses. Our struggle will soon become a big movement, he said.

Shahab Ansari said the first drop of rain is most important and it all starts with the first step that we take towards a goal. We have initiated protest against oppression and our just demand for release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman will soon bear fruit.

Apart from Jang Group workers office-bearers of All Pakistan Youth Movement and Talba Mazdoor Tehreek joined the protest.

In Peshawar, the members of the journalist community on Friday sought the release of the Jang/Geo Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman as they continued the protest against his arrest.

The protesters gathered outside the offices of the Daily Jang, The News and Geo TV and staged a walk. They carried banners and placards inscribed with slogans, condemning the incarceration of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman who headed the largest media group of the country.

Those who addressed the protesters included Daily Jang Resident Editor Arshad Aziz Malik, Shakeel Farman Ali, Shah Zaman, Qaisar Khan, Gulzar Khan, Imdad Ali Qazalbash and others. The speakers said Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman had been under detention for the last five months on false charges. They said the government was victimizing and punishing Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and his Jang Group for promoting objective journalism.

The protesters said legal experts and several others believed that the arrest of the Jang Group chief was illegal and unconstitutional. They said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had joined hands to pressure and victimize opponents and free media. The speakers said the NAB had ignored massive financial scandals, including Bus Rapid Transit, Malam Jabba, Billion Tsunami Tree, and those of sugar and flour.

They requested the chief justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan to take notice of the case and provide justice to Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman who symbolizes the free media.