Govt action against Jang Group: Ulema to observe protest today

By our correspondent

KARACHI: Various Ulema and Pesh Imams would observe protest day on Friday to condemn the government victimization against the Jang Group and express its solidarity with the freedom of the press.

This was announced by the chief of Tehrik-e-Awam Ahle Sunnat and Imam of New Memon Masjid Boultan Market Mufti Qari Razaul Mustafa Aazmi and Chairman Haji Hanif Billo. They said that the Imams and Khateebs would offer special prayers in Jumma prayers, besides adopting a resolution against the victimization of Jang Group.

They said the Ulema-e-Ahle Sunnat would decide the future line of action in its emergent meeting to be held on Friday. The opposition political parties alliance Pakistan Awami Ittehad (PAI) is likely to give a protest call against the government act of victimising national press and Jang Group.

The central leader of PAI and chief of Pakistan Muslim League (Qasim) Syed Kabir Ali Wasti said that the PAI heads' meeting would be held on Monday in Islamabad. He said the PAI meeting may give a protest call and requested the people to come on streets to express solidarity with the cause of press freedom and stop the government from victimizing Jang Group.

The Urban Democratic Front (UDF) also held its emergent meeting at the residence of party chief Hussain Haqqani and condemned the government action against Jang Group. The UDF meeting, chaired by Naheed Khan, viewed that press is the fourth pillar of the state and serving income tax notices, seizing accounts, banning government advertisements was a highly condemnable act.

The UDF appealed to President Rafiq Tarar, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Information Minister Mushahid Hussain and Senator Saifur Rehman to stop victimization against the Jang Group. The People's Labour Bureau, trade union body of the PPP, also expressed solidarity with the journalists community who protested on Thursday against the government victimization.

The trade union leaders Habibuddin Junedi, Khawaja Muhammad Awan, Kamran Choudhry, Shaikh Majeed, Agha Jafar, Yamin Mazhar, Latif Mughal, Manzoor Badayoni, Hanif Baloch, Shafi Sial, Saeed Ghani, Zahid Bashir, Khalid Lashkari, Rehmatullah Sarki, Liaquat Ali, faqir Sabz Ali Hisbani, Riaz Akhtar, Jabbar Memon, Wali Muhammad Lasi, Karim Kandawala, Liaquat Magsi, Asif Rahi, Nisar Baloch, Sakhawat Ali, Manzoor Razi, Sadiq Abbasi, Hussain Badshah, Shakeel Irani, Sohail Abidi, Mustafa Hashmani and Zulfiqar Kaimkhani, Khalid Hussain, Manzoor Hussain and Sohail Ahmed Khan assured the Jang Group and journalist community of their full support.

The former PPP MNA and trade union leader Aziz Memon also expressed solidarity with Jang Group and said the workers from Khaibar to Karachi would support the struggle of the journalist community and would fully participate in their struggle. The Imamia Students Organization also condemned the government act against the Jang Group, saying that this had exposed dictatorial thinking of the present rulers.

The News International Pakistan