Protests against govt failure to trace journalist
PESHAWAR, Jan 31: Feeling a mix of anger and helplessness, the Khyber Union of Journalists held a demonstration in front of the Governor’s House on Wednesday in protest against the government’s failure to recover a journalist kidnapped about a month ago.
The protesting journalists were joined by the Alliance of Human Rights Organisations and the hawkers’ association. They walked from the Peshawar Press Club to the Governor’s House, demanding protection for journalists.
Suhail Kalander, resident editor of the Daily Express, and his friend Niaz Ali were kidnapped from Hayatabad on the night of Jan 2. His car was recovered by the local police.
Speaking on the occasion, Khyber Union of Journalist general secretary Anser Abbas and acting president Hazrat Khan criticised the government for failing to recover the journalist.
They urged NWFP Governor Ali Mohammad Jan Aurakzai to take steps for recovery of Mr Kalander.
Rakhshinda Naz, representing the Alliance of Human Rights Organisation, offered support to the journalist’s body. She said her organisation would stand with the journalists at any forum. She expressed concern over the kidnapping of journalists and the government’s cold response to such incidents.
MNA Abdul Akber Chitrali, PPP MPA Abdul Akbar Khan also expressed concern over the kidnapping of journalists. They demanded that the government should provide protection to journalists and recover Mr Kalander.
The protesters criticised the NWFP government for failing to curb such crimes.
They vowed to continue their protest till the safe recovery of Mr Kalander and his friend.
The dismayed journalists dispersed without receiving any response from the Governor’s House.
SWABI: Leaders of political parties and local journalists held a rally here on Wednesday to protest against the disappearance of Suhail Kalander.
The rally was organised by the Abaseen Union of Journalists and was attended by leaders of political parties, civil society organisations and people from different walks of life.
The protesters marched on streets carrying placards and banners and reached the Colonel Sher Chowk, where it turned into a public meeting. The gathering strongly criticised the government of its failure to ensure the early and unconditional release of the journalist and his friend.
Political leaders said that the kidnapping of the journalist near Peshawar spoke of the deterioration in law and order situation and lack of commitment on part of the government machinery to check such incidents.