IHCJA demands action against culprits, negligent police officials involved in attack on journalists

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Zubair Qureshi

While condemning an incident of physical attack and torture on journalists in the Accountability Court of Islamabad on Monday, various media and journalists’ representative bodies and organizations have demanded legal action against the perpetrators and called for adequate security measures for the media persons covering courts and high-profile cases.

According to details, court reporters of various TV channels and newspapers were present in the Accountability Court on Monday when the accused Adam Amin, Amin Chaudhry, Rehman Jaan, Anwar Afridi and Naveed Malik were brought there. They were to be framed and the journalists as per the practice started filming them. This infuriated the accused and they hit and tortured journalists present on the occasion. As a result of the torture, Haseeb Malik, Qazi Rizwan, Tahir Naseer and Muhammad Usman got injured in the premises of the Accountability Court building.

Ironically, the police force that escorted the accused stood there as silent spectators and didn’t even try to interfere or protect the journalists.

The accused after manhandling and torturing the journalists left the premises and even took along with them mobile phones to two journalists Haseeb Malik and Muhammad Usman.

Immediately after the incident, President of the Islamabad High Court Journalists Association (IHCJA) Usman Bashir and Secretary Zeeshan Syed, members including Ehtsham Kiani, Fiaz Mehmood and others held a meeting with the IHC and the Islamabad police senior officers and called for action against the tormentors. They also demanded adequate security arrangements for the court reporters.

A complaint was also lodged with the Ramna Police Station. The IHCJA delegation led by President Saqib Bashir also held a meeting with Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr Akbar Nasir Khan and brought the matter to his notice. The IGP assured the journalists necessary action would be taken in this regard and purely on merit. He assigned the job to Superintendent of Police (SP) Saddar to personally investigate the matter.

A number of media representative organizations and journalists’ bodies including the National Press Club, Rawalpindi-Islamabad Union of Journalists (RIUJ), Islamabad Crime and Court Reporters Association (ICCRA), Parliamentary Reporters Association (PRA) and others have condemned the incident and called for exemplary action against the culprits.

They have also demanded disciplinary action against those policemen who were standing there but didn’t interfere to protect the media persons.

 

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