Assault on journalists, Bilawal proposes courts’ cognisance

 Assault on journalists, Bilawal proposes courts’ cognisance

PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari

Islamabad, 18 June: PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said that cases of assault on journalists across the country should be heard in courts.

He said this while chairing a meeting of the Human Rights Committee of the National Assembly.

He also said he would write a letter to Director General Inter-Services Intelligence on various points raised in the Human Rights Committee regarding concerns of journalists and the recent incidents of attacks on the community.

“As the chairman of the Human Rights Committee, I will write a letter to DG ISI on the points raised in the committee meeting. The content of the letter will be between me and chief sahib,” Bilawal said.

Bilawal presided over a meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights in Parliament and discussed the recent attacks on journalists and the Protection of Journalists and Media Bill.

Journalists Asma Shirazi, Hamid Mir, Absar Alam, Munizae Jahangir, Asad Toor and Ehtesham Khan attended the meeting at the invitation of the chairperson of the committee.

Journalist Protection Bill

Addressing the meeting, Bilawal said those who shot Absar Alam remained unidentified. He said that he still does not know the outcome of a number of cases of attacks on journalists.

He said he agreed with the minister for human rights that a sub-committee should be formed on the Journalist Protection Bill.

Bilawal said that if the bill was passed without the review of the Opposition, they would reject it.

The PPP chairman said that there are many points in the Sindh Journalist Protection Bill which were not in the bill before the National Assembly. “Like the Aziz Memon case, other cases of assault on journalists across the country should be heard in courts,” he said.

He further said that a sub-committee of the Standing Committee on Human Rights should be formed on the Journalist Protection Bill.

He also invited a PTI member to head the sub committee so that the bill could be reviewed soon.

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