A judicial commission probing the murder of journalist Saleem Shahzad has submitted its report to Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani.
“The report includes the commission’s findings as well as recommendations by the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists for the journalist community and financial assistance to Shahzad’s family,” said Pervaiz Shoukat, PFUJ president and a member of the probe commission.
The commission was constituted by the government on June 16, 2011, six weeks after Shahzad’s mutilated body was found in Mandi Bahauddin. Shahzad went missing from Islamabad on May 29 only to be found murdered a day later. It was supposed to submit a report within six weeks but following inexplicable delays, the report was presented by the commission’s secretary six months later.
According to the notification issued by the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs on July 16th, 2011 obtained by The Express Tribune read: “S.RO. (I)/2011 –Whereas the heinous murder of Saleem Shahzad, a journalist has taken place and cause and circumstances leading to are to be ascertained.”
The commission, headed by Supreme Court Justice Saqib Nisar, met through June 2011 and January 2012 to compile the report. It interviewed journalists, intelligence officers, human rights activists and Shahzad’s widow. It also examined CCTV coverage of the highway where Shahzad’s car was found.
Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly noted the date of the commissions formation as June 21. This has been corrected. The error is regretted.