Senate panel takes notice of journalist’s arrest

ISLAMABAD - The Senate Standing Committee on Interior Wednesday took notice of the arrest of journalist and anchorperson Imran Riaz Khan by Punjab police in a treason case. Taking notice of the matter, the committee decided to summon its meeting at earliest to probe detention of the journalist. According to a notification, the committee decided to seek reports from police chiefs of Islamabad and Punjab on its earlier directions with particular reference to the queries and concerns raised by Imran regarding his harassment by the police. Meanwhile, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan during a press conference said that the government was against curbing freedom of expression. But it is wrong if someone is making accusations against anyone without any evidence, he added. The minister said that if any journalists used to talk beyond their profession and start presenting themselves as political workers, then they couldn’t take shelter under the garb of their journalism. “Are you a rented journalist that you have started attacking us without verifying (facts)?” he said while addressing Imran Riaz. “What benefits are you gaining out of it?” he said, and urged journalist organisations to take notice of the matter. Meanwhile, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Secretary General Asad Umar criticized the government for using “brutal tactics against people who have spoken the truth and showed them the mirror.” Addressing a protest outside Islamabad Press Club against the arrest of anchorperson, he said that the voices that were being silenced were the voices of Pakistan. Asad lamented that cases were being lodged against patriotic Pakistani journalists. However, he added that the Pakistani nation has woken up and they could not be silenced through such tactics.



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