RAWALPINDI / LAHORE / PESHAWAR / KARACHI: Journalists and employees of the Jang / Geo group on Friday said all international journalists, human rights activists and intellectuals declared Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s detention illegal and only intended to control the media in Pakistan.
They say Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman is a strong voice for media freedom in the country.
Journalists and workers from Geo and Jang Group along with journalist organizations, representatives from civil society and political workers have continued their nationwide protests against the illegal and unjust arrest of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman over the past seven months.
At the protest camp outside Jang and The News’ offices in Rawalpindi, protesters raised the slogan for the release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman.
Responding to the protest camp, Chairman of the Geo workers’ Joint Action Committee and Jang Group Islamabad and Jang Labor Union President Nasir Chisti said Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman refused to compromise his principled stance on media freedom and that it gave power to voices fighting for media freedom. in this country.
Senior journalist Abas Alam said the Jang / Geo workers were confident they would get justice from the Supreme Court and that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman would be released soon.
Chief Reporter Jang Rawalpindi Rana Ghulam Qadir said that freedom of media is a constitutional right and there will be no extra.
PML-N leader Imtiaz Taji said workers from political parties stood alongside Geo and Jang Group workers in a justice movement to Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman. Group worker Jang Amjad Abbassi said the morale of the Geo and Jang workers was still high and they were determined to continue the Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman liberation movement.
Group worker Jang Munir Shah said national and international journalists and human rights organizations voted for Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s release.
Among them, those who took part in the protest camp in Rawalpindi included Nusrat Malik, Kamal Shah, Naseerul Haq, Azhar Sulatn, Aslam Butt, Athar Naqvi, Khalid Mehmood and other social and political workers. In Lahore, journalists, members of civil society, media union officials and the Jang Workers’ Union continued to protest against the illegal arrest of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, who was detained for the past 210 days.
Demonstrating outside Jang’s Office Friday at a protest camp for 188 consecutive days, they criticized Prime Minister Imran Khan for taking a U-turn on his over 20 years high claim to turn Pakistan into a country like Medina, alleging that he used the slogan only. to woo media support for power. They said that Imran had actually made Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman a victim for exposing corruption and bad governance in the PTI regime. They regretted that the chief editor was detained even though there was no progress in investigating the corruption charges related to the property swap issue for the 34 year old. The protesters have called it a blatant attack on media freedom and a conspiracy to shut down the country’s largest media group. They chanted slogans against the fascist government and condemned the anti-media tactics of the NAB.
They demanded the chief judge take suo motu notice against this grave injustice which is a direct attack on freedom of expression and media freedom. They demanded Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s immediate release and threatened to launch an anti-government movement across the country if he was not released.
Secretary General of the Jang Works Union Malik Farooq Awan, Pakistan Times News Editor Zaheer Anjum, senior journalists Muhammad Shafiq, Awais Qarni, Abdul Wahab, Ayesha Akram, Munawwar Hussain, Shahid Aziz, Muhammad Ali, Akmal Bhatti, Afzal Abbas, Shahzad Rauf, Zahid Mehmood , Khizar Hayat and Masood Ahmad were prominent among the protesters.
In Peshawar, members of the journalist community on Friday continued protests against the arrest of Jang / Geo Group Editor in Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and demanding his release.
Peshawar Press Club president Syed Bukhar Shah led the protests outside the offices of Daily Jang, The News and Geo TV.
The protesters carried banners and placards bearing slogans calling for the release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman.
Syed Bukhar Shah, Arshad Aziz Malik, Shakeel Farman Ali, Farmanullah Jan, Gohar Ali, Ansar Abbas, Imdad Ali Qazalbash and others spoke at the occasion.
They criticized the government for targeting Jang Media Group and arresting Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman.
The protesters say the head of the Jang Group has been detained for the past 212 days in the case on fabricated charges.
They criticized the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for allegedly suppressing the opposition and free media.
Speakers alleged that the NAB targeted the opposition, but ignored massive corruption perpetrated by members of the ruling party.
They deplored the lack of anti-corruption watchdog action on wheat flour, sugar, Malam Jabba soil, the Billion Tree Tsunami and the Bus Rapid Transit Project scandal.
The protesters demanded Pakistan’s Supreme Court pay attention to the case and give justice to Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman.
DI Karachi, speaking at the demonstration for the release of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman, Secretary General of the Bux Ali Asghar Divine Pir Foundation said that the Jang-Geo Group is the leading media agency in the country and always supports the truth and reports the facts.
Asghar said the government had set a false precedent that would hurt him later. He said that the existence of independent media is related to the prevalence of democracy, but that this so-called elected government is worse than dictatorship.
He added that Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman’s long detention demonstrated its resilience in the face of systematic abuse. He reiterated his support for the employees protesting against the Jang-Geo Group and praised their struggle in the crisis created by the government.
Other people who spoke at the demonstration included secretary general of the Pakistan All Newspaper Employees Confederation Shakil Yamin Kanga, vice president of Sindh Muslim League-Nawaz Iqbal Khaksar, deputy chairman of APNEC Rana Yusuf and secretary general of the News Workers Union Dara Zafar.
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