Demand for arrest of writer’s murderers quashed with force

Activists, human rights bodies condemn Larkana police attack on protestors seeking justice for Hidayat Lohar

Our Correspondent March 19, 2024
Police officer in riot gear stand guard. PHOTO: REUTERS


The human rights defenders, the social media activists and political workers on Monday condemned the Larakana police that restored baton charge to disperse the protest held by Hidayat Lohar’s family, relatives and supporters on Sunday near Larkana Press Club.

The police after the tussle with the protestors held some participants, including Sasui Lohar and Sorath Lohar, the daughters of Hidayat Lohar.

The protest attended by the literary figures, journalists, social and political activists was organized to demand the arrest of murderers of Hidayat Lohar, who was killed in Naseerabad on 16 February.

Number of persons were injured in the police attack, including the renowned literary figure, Taj Joyo.

Sharing the details of the incident, Joyo told The Express Tribune that he along with his son Sarang, and others were attending the peaceful protest in Larkana city when police after an argument started beating the protestors.

He said that he was hit badly by the police without knowing that an elderly person could hardly tolerate such attacks. “They attack indiscriminately. It was a peaceful protest,” he said, adding that at least two FIRs have also been lodged against 26 known and over 150 unknown persons.

“Taj Joyo is a distinguished writer of Sindh who has been awarded the Pride of Performance. He formerly served as the secretary of Sindhi Language Authority and secretary general of the Sindhi Adabi Board,” writes Dr Arfana Mallah, Sindh university professor and women right activist.

Today, she added, he was violently attacked by the Larkana police. He participated in peaceful rally organized by two daughters. It is unacceptable and highly condemnable. CM Sindh should suspend the concerned police officers.

“Police should respect the law and should not obey illegal orders of their leadership,” said Sindh Human Rights Defenders Network (SHRDN), expressing its serious concern over targeting the peaceful protest.

In a statement it said that in case of protests, generally, police use force to disperse the protesters and also lodge FIRs against them. Currently, Anti Terrorism Laws are also being applied on political workers and protestors, activists who hold such protests against the state or police.

It said that the protestors were also arrested by Larkana police later when civil society of Sindh and human rights defenders reacted then they released them.

“Renowned author and activist Taj Joyo was also beaten and baton charged by the Larkana Police whose marks on his back were conspicuous and covered by the media,” it stated.

SHRDN demands action against those police officers who used force against the peaceful protestors, release of political workers detained in that case and also cancel that case against the human rights defenders who did peaceful protest for their human rights.


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