Photo Credit: PTI
Islamabad, April 22: In Pakistan (Pakistan), the incidents of attacks on journalists are seen every day. Here, targeted attacks on journalists, kidnappings, murders and assassination attempts on senior writers continue unabated. A similar incident has come to light in Pakistan. In the capital Islamabad, senior journalist and former president of Pakistan Electronic Media Authority, Absar Alam was shot dead by unknown assailants. In a video message shared on social media, Absar Alam can be seen stating that he was shot outside his house.
He told, “I have a bullet in my ribs. However I have not given up hope. I would like to say to those who have done this that I am not afraid of these antics.” He is currently out of danger. After this incident, Alam was immediately taken to the hospital and at the moment his condition remains stable. After this incident, the Islamabad police took immediate notice and the capital police chief has formed a special team under the command of SSP (investigation) to investigate the attack. Federal Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid has also taken cognizance of the attack and ordered the Islamabad IG to investigate the matter with immediate effect. Also read: Pakistan: 4 killed in strong bomb blast in Quetta luxury hotel, fear of Chinese ambassador being targeted, Imran Khan’s minister accuses India
“Those involved in the shootout should be arrested as soon as possible,” he said. The minister said, “Those who shoot at Absar Alam will not be able to escape from the purview of the law. Very soon they will be under the purview of the law.” The murderous attack on Alam has caused resentment among the journalists, and the opposition politicians have also issued statements on this incident, calling it cruel. Maryam Nawaz, the vice-president of the main opposition party PML-N, has condemned the attack. He said that suppressing the voice of dissatisfaction has spread in our country like cancer. He said in a tweet that Absar Alam Saheb has become the latest victim of cruel and barbaric crime. May Allah soon heal the wounds of them and the nation.
At the same time, Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists has also criticized the government for the attacks on journalists amid rising crime and terrorism in the country. It has said that such incidents cannot stop the journalist community from raising their voice against the chaos and freedom of the press in the country. The PFUJ has demanded that a judicial commission be set up to investigate the attacks on Alam and crimes against other journalists. Mediamen in Pakistan continue to be targets of threats, kidnappings, torture, arrests and murders. At least 10 journalists were murdered in the country in 2020, while many others were threatened, kidnapped and tortured. Also read: Pakistan: Temporary ban on many social media apps in Pakistan including Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, TickTalk
There are also incidents of arresting journalists by making various allegations. According to the Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) Media Freedom Report 2020, “no action has been taken so far against those responsible for torturing and killing journalists and it seems that such individuals enjoy fairness.” The report said that it is a matter of grave concern that the legal system of the country has not been able to protect the journalists and provide justice to them and it has become useless.