Judicial commission to probe journalist’s killing

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Interior Rehman Malik on Tuesday said that a judicial commission would be constituted to ascertain facts about the killing of a private news channel journalist in Khuzdar. The commission, to be headed by a senior judge with members from journalist community, will find the facts about the killing of Abdul Haq Baloch, a working journalist, he added.

Malik was talking to media persons, who were protesting outside the National Press Club (NPC) against the killing of media persons, registration of cases against them and their dismissal from different media organisations.

The minister said he would also depute FIA and IB officials to probe the reasons of killing so as to prepare a strategy to avoid such incidents in future. He also announced withdrawal of a case registered against journalists for holding protest in Quetta and added he had already talked to Balochistan CM and Home Secretary.

Malik said that he had directed the Home Secretary to arrest the killers of Abdul Haq Baloch and also announced Rs 2.5 million awards for the person, who would provide information leading to the killers’ arrest.

He said that besides providing financial assistance to the deceased’s family, his son would be given a job in the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA). Malik said that the government believed in the freedom of media and would continue facilitating it to flourish. He said that he would propose a bill to ensure protection of the journalists. For drafting of the bill, to be called “Protection of Journalists”, he would talk to Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira, he said, adding that the main objective of the bill would be to facilitate those journalists, who worked in war zones.

On the issue of registration of cases against journalists in Aabpara police station, Malik assured them that he would talk to the IGP Islamabad in this regard and the matter would be addressed positively.

Earlier, president of the Pakistan Federation of Union of Journalist (PFUJ) Pervez Shaukat, NPC President Farooq Faisal, RIUJ President Waqar Satti, NPC Secretary Shehryar Ahmad and a large number of journalists staged a demonstration to demand arrest of the killers of journalists. They appreciated Malik for his efforts in the withdrawal of case against the journalists in Quetta.

Pakistan Press Foundation

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