JI announces solidarity with journalists

By our Correspondent

LAHORE: The Jamaat-e-Islami, condemning the high-handedness of the government against the Jang Group, has announced complete solidarity with the journalists community.

At a press conference at Mansoora on Thursday, Jamaat chief Qazi Hussain Ahmad termed the government's war against Jang, Ausaf and other newspapers as open aggression and announced the formation of Jamaat's three-member press freedom committee to fight along the journalists against state aggression.

The committee, comprising Prof Ghafoor Ahmad, Liaquat Baloch and Amirul Azeem, will meet the editors and working journalists of all the newspapers and take various steps to ensure the freedom of press. He announced that a national seminar on press freedom would be held in Karachi on February 7, and protest processions would be taken out in all the big cities.

He said the rulers had created chaos in the country and also committed contempt of the apex court by ignoring its orders. He said if there was any case of tax evasion against the Jang Group it should have been settled accordingly. The Jamaat chief said the prime minister, his family and Saifur Rehman themselves were tax evaders and the cassettes had exposed that Saif, the stooge of Nawaz Sharif, tried to blackmail the Jang Group on the tax issue.

Qazi demanded immediate resignation of Nawaz, and appealed to the APNS and the CPNE to forge unity among their ranks for the sake of the freedom of press. On the question whether Mian Azhar would meet him, he replied that Azhar used to meet him off and on even when he was the governor Punjab and added that he had called him to express the desire to hold a breakfast meeting.

When asked about forming a caretaker government for three months in case of fresh elections, he said the most important question was that who would run it. On the bus diplomacy, he said: "It is the murder of Kashmiris."

February 07, 1999
The News International Pakistan