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Columnist, anchor Raza Rumi attacked, driver loses life

Updated March 28, 2014
Columnist and TV anchor Raza Rumi. -Dawn File Photo
Columnist and TV anchor Raza Rumi. -Dawn File Photo

LAHORE: An attack on noted columnist and TV anchor Raza Rumi led to the unfortunate death of his driver Mustafa on Friday evening.

Raza Ahmed, popularly known as Raza Rumi, was injured in an attack along with his guard and driver near Raja Market.

According to TV reports, Rumi escaped with a minor injury and managed to shift his guard and driver to the hospital in critical condition.

However, his driver succumbed to his injuries. The guard’s condition is also said to be critical.

Rumi said he was distraught over his driver's killing, whom he described as “innocent” and a breadwinner for 10 other family members.

“God has saved me. I just heard the... bullets when we took a turn near Raja Market and put my head down,” he told AFP, adding his bodyguard leapt to save him.

“Extremists want no counter narrative in the state that is why they are attacking alternative voices.”

Amnesty International's Pakistan researcher Mustafa Qadri said: “Raza's case is a sad reminder of the threats faced by journalists like him who are promoting human rights and understanding in Pakistan.

“Amnesty International has documented at least three cases of journalists killed this year as a direct result of their work, with scores of others, like Raza, narrowly escaping,” he told AFP.

Earlier this month Pakistan announced it would set up a special commission to protect journalists and will include press freedom as part of peace talks with the Taliban.

In a few updates on Twitter, Rumi shared the incident with his followers.

His followers and peers condemned the incident and sent out tweets supporting him.

This is the fifth attack on Express Media Group. Three staff members of the group lost their lives in an attack earlier this year.


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