Home Uncategorized Punjab Police Under Fire: Journalist Jahangir Hayat Assaulted and Detained

Punjab Police Under Fire: Journalist Jahangir Hayat Assaulted and Detained

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Punjab Police Under Fire: Journalist Jahangir Hayat Assaulted and Detained

Police officers in the Icchra area of Lahore, Punjab province, reportedly assaulted and detained Jahangir Hayat, the chief reporter for the privately owned daily newspaper Daily Business, on May 1. This information was documented in a report by his outlet, as well as through video footage of the incident circulated on social media. Hayat himself confirmed the incident during a phone conversation with CPJ.

During the incident, police also apprehended Hayat’s wife and their seven-year-old daughter. The family was detained for approximately 45 minutes before being released, as reported by various sources.

According to Hayat, he believes the assault and detention were retaliatory measures against his journalistic work, particularly his coverage of crime and alleged police misconduct, which CPJ reviewed.

Expressing concern over the incident, CPJ Program Director Carlos Martinez de la Serna emphasized the risks faced by Pakistani journalists in the course of their duties. He called for an immediate and impartial investigation into the matter, urging accountability for those responsible and a clear demonstration that such attacks will not be tolerated.

Hayat recounted the sequence of events, stating that while he and his family were walking to their motorcycle, he noticed that its speedometer was damaged. Seeking assistance, he approached a nearby police van, suspecting vandalism. Upon presenting his press card for identification, Hayat claimed that the officers recognized him, verbally abused him, and threatened him, with one officer allegedly vowing to suppress his journalism.

Deputy Superintendent Zakaria Yusuf of the Icchra Police then arrived at the scene and ordered Hayat’s detention, according to the journalist. Hayat reported being struck in the ribs with pistols, grabbed by the neck, and forcefully placed into a police vehicle along with his wife and daughter.

After holding the family for approximately 45 minutes, the officers took them to the Icchra Police Station, where they were released without charges following the arrival of a group of journalists who gathered at the station’s entrance.

Hayat disclosed that he sustained injuries to his ribs and neck from the assault, for which he required pain relief medication. Additionally, he noted that his daughter was deeply affected by the traumatic incident.

Subsequently, on May 9, Hayat filed complaints with the offices of Lahore Capital City Police Officer Bilal Kamyana, Senior Superintendent of Lahore Police Operations Mustansar Feroze, and Inspector-General of Punjab Police Sardar Ali Khan. However, as of the journalist’s statement, no action had been taken against the officers involved in the assault and detention.

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