Balochistan govt withdraws FIR against ARY News

QUETTA: The Balochistan government on Tuesday withdrawn the FIR lodged against ARY News for airing a video of attack on Ziarat residency, a day after the provincial government’s move triggered a strong protest from all journalist organizations across Pakistan.

The Balochistan police lodged a first information report (FIR) against ARY News on Monday under the Anti-Terrorist Act of 1997 for airing a video of attack on Ziarat residency. The FIR was lodged against CEO ARY Communications Salman Iqbal, Director News Owais Tahid and Beauro Chiefs’ of Islamabad and Quetta.

Speaking on the floor of Balochistan Assembly on Tuesday, the Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Malik Baloch apologized to the team of ARY News and announced to withdraw the FIR and ordered an inquiry into the incident.

“We believe in freedom of press and freedom of expression,” Baloch said.

The decision of Balochistan government of registering the FIR against the news channel faced serious condemnation from all journalist organizations throughout Pakistan.

On Tuesday, members of various journalists’ bodies following a decision of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) held a protest demonstration in various cities of the country against Balochistan government’s move of registering an FIR against ARY News.

The Journalist organizations termed it as an “attack on Press Freedom.”

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