ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Senator Pervaiz Rashid, on Monday called senior journalist Zafar Aaheer on telephone and inquired after him.
While talking to the senior journalist, the minister condemned the assault on him in Multan.He said that the government believed in freedom of expression and would take every possible step to ensure the security of the working journalists and media persons so that they could perform their duties in accordance with their professional ethos. The minister also prayed for early recovery of the injured journalist. — APP
News Desk adds: The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) also strongly condemned the attack on Zafar Aheer. The CPNE has demanded of the federal and provincial governments to provide adequate protection and security to the editors and journalists.
In a statement, the president and secretary-general of the CPNE, Mujeeb-ur-Rehman Shami and Dr Jabbar Khattak, said that the attack on Zafar Aheer is a vile attempt to trample on journalism.
They said that despite the repeated demands for security to newspaper editors, journalists and newspaper workers, the number of complaints of terrorism is increasing. The statement demanded of the government to arrest the culprits involved in torturing Zafar Aheer and to bring them to book so that the fraternity of journalists could carry out their responsibilities freely, impartially and without any fear.
Our correspondent adds: Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has also condemned attacks on Daily Jang Resident Editor in Multan, Zafar Aaheer, and Jang bureau chief in Khairpur.
It also appealed to the clerics issuing fatwas to instruct their followers to refrain from harming journalists and media workers.In a joint statement, PFUJ President Afzal Butt, and Secretary General Khursheed Abbasi said law enforcement agencies should ensure protection of journalists and media workers.
They said condolence messages would not work if any journalist suffered from an irreparable loss. Butt appealed to Jang Group not to mention names of threatened journalists and media workers, as it would add to dangers to their life. He said Jang Group should register cases of threats to journalists at the concerned police stations.
The PFUJ president and secretary general said the government is playing silent spectator on the issue of media crisis, which is increasing their concern. They said the government should try to resolve the media conflict at the earliest and ensure security of journalists. They added that those involved in attacks on journalists should be arrested.