Journalists demand govt lift ban on three newspapers -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Journalists demand govt lift ban on three newspapers

KARACHI: Journalists held a protest demonstration outside Governor House Friday, demanding the government lift a ban on three Urdu-language publications, Daily Islam, Weekly Islami and Monthly Al-Abraar.

A meeting of working journalists’ bodies, KUJ and PFUJ, headed the demonstration at the press club. Speakers condemned and criticised the government’s decision, which they said was a bid to impose its authority on the media.

The speakers included PFUJ Secretary General Mazhar Abbas, KUJ President Shamimur Rehman, KPC Secretary Imtiaz Khan Faran, Daily Islam’s Editor Qari Abdul Rehman and others. They threatened to take their protest across the country if the suspension was not removed.

Later, while speaking to Daily Times, Qari Rehman said that if the suspension continued then a large number of workers, affiliated with the newspapers would be without jobs.

Rehman also said that his office did not receive any official call or notification from any government agency. He said only a part of his newspaper could be printed after printers and hawkers refused to work, for fear of reprisal from the government.

Rehman also said that his newspaper has no affiliation with any of the recently banned charities, Al-Akhtar Trust and The Al-Rasheed Trust. The Sindh home secretary had on Thursday said that action was taken against these publications for their alleged involvement with the two charities.

Rehman said that his newspaper has “absolutely” no link with either trust. He also said his newspaper was run by the Islam Welfare Foundation. He admitted that his office was located next to the office of the Al-Rasheed Trust, “but this does not mean that we are connected with them. We are an independent group and that is it,” he said. “There are other offices and shops on the same street. Also, everybody knows that we are separate from them (Rasheed).”
Source: Daily Times
Date:2/24/2007