Islamabad, Pakistan: 16 newspapers have seized their printing and publications from Gilgit-Baltistan since March 21, 2017 due to censorship imposed by the government of Gilgit-Baltistan, says Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ).
PFUJ has announced protest outside of Prime Minister Secretariat in Islamabad on March 30, 2017 against censorship imposed by the government of Gilgit-Baltistan.
According to PFUJ, government of Gilgit-Baltistan headed by Chief Minister Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman is registering criminal cases to harass journalists who are exposing moral and financial corruption of government.
Reports suggest that a number of journalists have been arrested and sent to jail who were publishing news about alleged corrupt practices of Gilgit-Baltistan government.
Meanwhile cases have been registered against many journalists who have been compelled to leave the province and went underground.
PFUJ leadership maintains that it would stand with journalist community of Gilgit-Baltistan against barbaric acts of Gilgit-Baltistan government to snub freedom of press.
President-elect of PFUJ Afzal Butt while talking to Dispatch News Desk (DND) news agency said that journalist community of Pakistan would not leave journalist of Gilgit-Baltistan alone to face wrath of Chief Minister Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman and would raise the issue at every level within Pakistan and aboard if needed. He was of the view that federal government should act without delay to stop barbaric practices of harassing and arresting bonafide and senior journalists by government of Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman.
Meanwhile, President National Press Club (NPC) Islamabad, Shakeel Anjum said that journalist community of Islamabad would not let government of Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman to act like a dictator against freedom of press and would play its role.
General Secretary of Rawalpindi Islamabad Union of Journalist Ali Raza Alvi was of the view that government of Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman was acting like government of late dictator Ziaul Haq who used to snub freedom of press during his Martial law rule spanning over 11 years.
“We journalists stood against worst dictators like Ziaul Haq and we know how to fight and protect our right of freedom and freedom of press. We are protesting in Islamabad to tell the government to stop its draconian practices against journalists otherwise we would not hesitate to start nation-wide movement against the government of Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman”, said Alvi while talking to DND news agency.