The cost of writing the truth

Posted by Admin On Thursday, 7 February 2013 0 comments

Usman Manzoor
ISLAMABAD: A journalist in Larkana has lost a son, two nephews, a grandson and a cousin for daring to report the heinous crimes committed by a local feudal lord. Surviving a life attempt is besides these tragedies, which will last long in Hafiz Khair Muhammad Hussaini’s memory.
The Chief Justice of Pakistan took suo moto notice of the adversities faced by Hafiz Khair Muhammad Hussaini, correspondent of Daily Jang from Larkana since 1974, but the feudal lords are so strong that they have killed his cousin after the suo moto notice by the SC just to give a message to the journalist not to write the truth.

This does not end here. The police inspector who is named in the murder of journalist’s nephews was first given a clean chit in the murder case after the suo moto notice and was promoted to the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police just a few days ago. While listening to the bone chilling tales of what the correspondent of Daily Jang came across after reporting a murder incident in 1997 when a police constable was shot dead in cold-blood by the local feudal lords, Pakistan really appears to be the most dangerous country for journalists.

Khair Muhammad was the first in the area to report the crimes of very powerful dacoits and murderers and the accused in the first place tried to murder him while he was offering Friday prayers in a local mosque, but luckily escaped death as another person died due to the firing of the landlord’s men. Hussain told this correspondent that on June 8, 2012, his son Mushtaq Ahmad was murdered by Imdad Chandio’s son Ali Raza and he had registered an FIR No. 52/2012 in Police Station Wara.

He said Ali Raza is also nameed in 28 other cases of heinous crimes and is at large. “When I did not stop pursuing the case of my son’s murder, on November 3, 2012, my two nephews and a grandson were murdered in cold-blood and an FIR No. 110/2012 was registered against Manzoor Chandio and Inspector Shafqat Chandio”, Khair Muhammad continued.

He said that on December 24, 2012 the Chief Justice of Pakistan took suo moto notice of the atrocities faced by him for reporting the truth and the Supreme Court ordered the police to submit a report after arresting the accused within fifteen days. He said that after a month, the police gave a clean chit to Inspector Shafqat Chandio and exonerated him in the murder case. “The police has submitted a report in the Supreme Court stating that they have arrested three accused and were trying to arrest others while those who have been arrested were the gunmen and servants of the feudal lord”, said the journalist. He maintained that even after the suo moto notice of his case, the feudal lord murdered his first cousin Ali Akber on February 1, 2013 while one of his female relatives was severely injured in the gun assault.

He lamented that the accused inspector after getting a clean chit from his has been promoted as DSP. He said that he has been threatened time and again not to pursue the cases.

Khair Muhammad said that on Monday, the Supreme Court Karachi Registry disposed of the suo moto case after police assured the court to arrest the culprits but the reality was different from what the court has been told. He said the murderers of his relatives are free; there is no protection to his life; threats are being hurled at him every now and then and one day he would also fall prey to the guns of those against whom he has dared to write.

Yet Khair Muhammad is hopeful that one day he will be able to write the truth without any hindrance and threats and that the killers of his dear ones will be brought to book.

The News


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