Journalist bodies call for an end to harassment of Rana Abrar Khalid

ISLAMABAD—Several journalist bodies, including the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) and the Rawalpindi Islamabad Union of Journalists (RIUJ), have taken notice of the alleged harassment of journalist Rana Abrar Khalid by security agencies.

“…The journalist was demanding details of gifts received by Prime Minister Imran Khan from the foreign heads of state and heads of governments since 2017,” PFUJ President Shahzada Zulfiqar and Secretary-General Nasir Zaidi said in a statement.

The PFUJ leaders termed the tactics the government and its agencies used as unwanted, urging that it is the constitutional right of journalists and citizens of Pakistan to acquire information.

“I was told by some fellow journalists that the federal intelligence agency IB was investigating me a few days ago and that IB officials went to them and asked them this question specifically about me,” Khalid said.

According to him, three suspicious women had recently searched his house under the guise of a dengue survey and took photographs. “…although there was no dengue survey in my street or in the entire area where I live. By which, my doubt has turned into the belief that the suspicious women came to my house either to steal a specific file which is related to my appeal to Pakistan Information Commission (PIC) or they may have come to my house to install spy equipment (bugs),” the journalist stated.

Secretary-General RIUJ Tariq Ali Virk backed the journalist and warned of protests.

Earlier, the journalist had demanded that the PFUJ, RIUJ, and other journalist bodies take appropriate steps to ensure his and his family’s safety. Journalist bodies, in response, warned of severe consequences and asked for inquiry against those officials involved in harassing Khalid.

Source: Journalism Pakistan

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