Quetta using silver bullet to kill Baloch owned newspapers

Corrupt and dishonest officials in the Balochistan capital of Quetta are bent upon to strangulate the credible local newspapers economically for political reasons, according to reports.

The newspapers under attack include Balochistan Express, Daily Azadi and Intikhab, owned by Baloch publishers. Balochistan Express and Daily Azadi are owned by veteran journalist Siddiq Baloch, who once used to work for Dawn newspaper. Intekhab is owned by Anwar Sajidi.

An appeal by the newspaper managements said political parties, human rights activists and all right minded people should condemn arbitrary action against genuine and credible newspapers known for their professionalism and independence in reporting.

These newspapers do not openly defy the existing systems but try to work within the constitutional frameworks, but corrupt officials in the administration are still trying to spell their death.

On the other hand, Khadim Lehri, Baloch editor of the pro-freedom daily Tawar newspaper was hounded by the intelligence sleuths and has been forced to go into hiding.

Quite a few journalists and contributors of the Daily Tawar were abducted, tortured, killed and their bodies dumped since 2010.

Lala Hameed Baloch, a senior journalist of Tawar was on October 25 2010,  abducted by Pakistani military and its notorious agencies at Karwat while he was going to attend marriage of a closed relative in Dasht Kunchiti. He was tortured to death and his body was dumped on November 18, 2010 alongside the body of Hamid Ismail at Hiroonk, a village 55 kilometer away from Turbat city. A paper was found in his pocket, on which it was written “An Eid Gift for Baloch Nation”.

The Committee to Protect Journalists reported Javed Naseer Rind, an editor and columnist with the Urdu-language Daily Tawar, Rind was kidnapped in his hometown of Hub in southern Baluchistan province on September 11, 2011. “Rind’s body was found in Khuzdar on November 5, nearly two months after he was abducted, according to news reports. The journalist had been shot multiple times in the head and chest, and his body showed numerous signs of torture, local news media reported.

According to BBC English, the mutilated body of Daily Tawar journalist Haji Abdul Razzak has been identified by his family, a day after it was found in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi August 21, 2013. The Balochistan-based journalist was abducted since 24 March and was tortured to death. The BBC report said, “only his arms and legs were sufficiently intact to enable identification.”

Several other Baloch journalists who used to write for Daily Tawar were also abducted and later killed under custody included Ahmed Dad Baloch, Nawaz Ahmed Marri, Rahmatullah Shaheen, Munir Shakir and advocate Ali Sher Kurd.

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