Islamabad, Apr 20: Unidentified gunmen shot a senior Pakistani journalist on Tuesday while he was taking a walk near his house in Islamabad.
Absar Alam, who also served as a chairman of Pakistan Electronic Media Authority (PEMRA), the country’s electronic media watchdog, was rushed to a hospital where he was out of danger.
Alam confirmed the attack in a video message uploaded on Twitter.
“I”ve been hit in my ribs,” he said, adding that he had not lost hope. My message to those who did this is that I am not going to be scared by such tactics,” Alam said.
So far, nobody has taken responsibility of the attack.
The Islamabad Police have constituted a special team to investigate the matter from all aspects.
“The team has been directed to use all scientific and forensic methods to trace the accused involved in the incident,” according to a tweet by Islamabad Police.
Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry condemned the incident in a message on Twitter, adding that the police had been asked to investigate the attack.
PML-N Vice-President Maryam Nawaz, also condemning the incident, said silencing the voice of dissent is a cancer that has “plagued this country for many years”.
“Absar Alam sahab is the latest victim of this cruel and barbaric crime. May Allah SWT heal his wounds and the wounds of this country,” she added.
Pakistan Peoples Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari deplored the incident and demanded that the people involved in the incident be arrested.
“An inquiry should be launched into the incident,” Bilawal said as he prayed for the early recovery of the journalist.
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan also strongly condemned the “assassination attempt” on the senior journalist.
“HRCP sees such cowardly acts of violence against journalists as an assault on an already muzzled media,” it added.
Pakistan is considered as one of the most dangerous countries for journalists. The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) in its Media Freedom Report 2020 said that at least 10 journalists were murdered and several others threatened, kidnapped, tortured and arrested in the country in 2020.—(PTI)