Journalist shot dead outside Lahore Press Club

    A local journalist was shot dead by unidentified armed men on Monday outside the Lahore Press Club (LPC), officials said.

    According to police officials, Hasnain Shah was in his car outside the press club when the suspects, riding a motorcycle, intercepted and shot him, killing him on the spot.

    Hasnain was a crime reporter at a private TV channel and also a member of the LPC.

    Lahore CCPO Fayyaz Ahmed, while taking notice of the incident, said that all resources will be used to apprehend the suspects of the incident.

    The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) has condemned the journalist’s murder in broad daylight, saying that the tragic incident raised questions over the safety and security of journalists in the country.

    The CPNE demanded the government to immediately arrest the culprits and punish them as per the law.

    Pakistan Federal Union of Journalist (PFJU) President Shehzada Zulfiqar, Secretary-General Nasir Zaidi and Treasurer Zulfiqar Ali Mahto condemned the incident. They said the provincial government has failed to maintain law and order in the city.

    They also demanded the authorities to arrest the suspects at the earliest.

    Lahore Press Club President Azam Chaudhry said a journalist’s murder in front of the press club in broad daylight is a moment of reflection for the government, adding that the incident would not go unnoticed and the authorities will be held responsible if culprits are not apprehended soon.

    Pakistan is one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists, particularly those covering conflict zones, according to data from the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Without Borders (known by its French acronym RSF) media rights watchdogs.

    Between 1992 and 2022, a total of 63 journalists have been murdered in Pakistan, CPJ data shows.

    In 2021, RSF rated Pakistan 145 out of 180 countries on its World Press Freedom Index whereas according to the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), of the 45 journalists killed worldwide in 2021, three were killed in Pakistan.

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