Journalists protest against intrusion at Karachi Press Club

November 9, 2018

Photo courtesy: Zia ur Rehman

Journalists protested outside the Karachi Press Club after a dozen armed men barged into the building, looking for a man named Imran.

“Three or four people came to the roof when we were busy in an event for the volunteers of August 14,” Naimat Khan, KPC’s joint secretary, told SAMAA Digital. “They said they were looking for a man named Imran when we inquired about the purpose of their visit.”

There were around 50 journalists present on the roof and they asked the visitors to call Imran, Naimat said, adding that the armed men replied that Imran’s phone was switched off.

In a statement issued Thursday night, the KPC officials said that dozens of gunmen in plainclothes entered the KPC at 10:30pm, harassed journalists, and examined different rooms, including the kitchen, upper floor of the building and the sports hall.

Ahmed Khan Malik, the club’s president, and Secretary Maqsood Yusufi called the ‘intrusion’ a violation of the club’s sanctity and urged the authorities to take action.

Karachi AIG Dr Amir Ahmed Shaikh assured the KPC office-bearers that he will into the matter.

The men were carrying locators and cameras, said a journalist who was present there. When the staff asked the men why they were making videos, they were told to do their job. When the club office-bearers approached the authorities, they were told that the men were looking for a high-profile target.

Yusufi told the journalists at the KPC on Friday that the South SSP has apologised for the incident and told the office-bearers that the armed men were members of a sister organisation and were looking for someone.

The matter was also raised in the Senate by Senator Hasil Bizenjo. He said that the men “misbehaved” with journalists.

Sadiq Sanjrani, the Senate chairman, told the Sindh government to submit a report. He said that he will ask the interior ministry to look into the matter.