HARIPUR: The police on Saturday registered a case against a man for intimidating and harassing a local journalist as media bodies demanded early arrest of the suspect.

Waqar Ali, reporter of an Urdu daily, lodged a complaint with the police, stating that he received a phone call from a man during early hours of Saturday, in which the caller warned him not to give excessive coverage to a local political family known as Jehazon Wala group of Ghazi tehsil through his newspaper and social media pages.

The complainant told the police that the caller introduced himself as Usman Khan.

He told the police that when he tried to explain that giving coverage to political parties, politicians and individuals was his professional obligation, the caller threatened him of dire consequences similar to local journalists, Bukhsheesh Elahi, who was killed in 2017, and Sohail Khan, who was murdered in 2018.

On the complaint of Waqar Ali, who sought protection from the caller, the city police have registered a criminal case against the caller under sections 506 of Pakistan Penal Code and 28 of Pakistan Telegraph Act for intimidating, harassing and hurling threats of harm against the journalist.

Meanwhile, president of Haripur Union of Journalists Younas Majaz, president of Haripur Press Club Hanif Akhtar, Abid Abbasi and Tariq Ali Virk, president and general secretary, respectively, of Rawalpindi Islamabad Union of Journalists, and Shakil Qarar, former president of National Press Club Islamabad have condemned the life threats to Waqar Ali and demanded of the provincial government and the Haripur police to ensure protection of Mr Ali and his family against such threats.

Published in Dawn, August 28th, 2022

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