Senior journalist Aftab Alam shot dead in Karachi

Published: September 9, 2015
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People gather outside journalist Aftab Alam's car after his murder in North Karachi on September 9, 2015. PHOTO: ONLINE

People gather outside journalist Aftab Alam's car after his murder in North Karachi on September 9, 2015. PHOTO: ONLINE

KARACHI: Two unidentified armed men shot dead senior journalist Aftab Alam on Wednesday in a drive-by shooting incident in the city’s North Karachi area.

Alam was shot dead by unidentified assailants outside his house in Sector 11-C of North Karachi, sources told The Express Tribune.

The senior journalist was critically injured in the attack and was rushed to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, sources added.

Read: Targeted killing: Political leader shot dead in Orangi Town

“He was targeted by two motorcycle riders waiting for him outside his house,” DIG Feroze Shah told AFP.

He was struck by three bullets – two in the head and one in the neck, added Shah.

Alam had last worked for a leading private TV channel before retiring due to ill health last year, a colleague told AFP.

This is the second attack targeting media personnel in Karachi within 24 hours. Asatellite engineer associated with a private television channel was killed after unidentified gunmen opened fire on the channel’s DSNG van in Karachi on Tuesday.

The media van of private the broadcaster was attacked in the Bahadurabad neighbourhood of the city, where it was on assignment, police said. “The technician has died and the driver is injured in the attack,” police officer Irfan Asif told AFP.

Later, an official from private TV channel confirmed the death of the technician named Arshad Ali Jaffery.

Senior police officer Javed Jiskani said the police were gathering evidence from the area where the attack took place and had launched investigation.

Journalist unions had reacted immediately to the attack, calling for greater security for media personnel and the speedy arrest of the attackers.

Read: Renewing resolve: Karachi operation to continue, come what may

Last year, one of the leading anchors of the country Hamid Mir was attacked in Karachi, surviving with multiple gunshot wounds.

In 2011, gunmen shot dead Karachi-based reporter Wali Khan Babar after he filed a report on criminal gangs warfare in the city.

Reporters without Borders, a media rights watchdog, says there has been a marked increase since 2014 in media freedom violations by government officials and various political factions in Pakistan.

Karachi, a port city of some 20 million and country’s economic hub, is frequently hit by political and ethnic violence.

Paramilitary forces began a sweeping crackdown on alleged militants in the city in 2013, which has led to substantial drop in overall levels of violence.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Adil
    Sep 9, 2015 - 4:27PM

    ISI controls everything in and out including keeping an eye on politicians. Disproportionately powerful body in Pakistan.Recommend

  • Emad
    Sep 9, 2015 - 4:35PM

    This is a failure on the part of security agencies which is true but to avoid looking at the bigger picture which shows reduction in crime in Karachi is also being foolishRecommend

  • Indialover
    Sep 9, 2015 - 4:54PM

    Very sad. Appears no independent views will be tolerated in Pakistan. Condolences from IndiaRecommend

  • Brar
    Sep 9, 2015 - 5:58PM

    Tragic indeed, how can media personal work freely, RIP the departed soul.Recommend

  • Abid Shah Mashwani
    Sep 9, 2015 - 6:14PM

    Loss of any life is a sad news. It is not hidden fact that lawlessness is encouraged and patronized by government officials and most large political parties especially in big cities like Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad. Then blaming intelligence agencies for shooting of a retired journalist is unfair. In a city like Karachi where hundreds of millions people live including thousands of illegal, no intelligence agency could provide security to every single residence of the city. That is why it is important to depoliticize the police and held them accountable for such crimes.Recommend

  • romm
    Sep 9, 2015 - 8:37PM

    Very Sad and Tragic!Recommend

  • MJ
    Sep 9, 2015 - 8:51PM

    A big part of reduction in crime in Karachi is that since the stricter enforcement of Rangers led operation, Police “jawans” who during their off-duty times are so heavily involved in robberies and all other kinds of illegal activities have become dormant for the time being. More than 80% of crime has always been executed in Karachi by the Police or with their knowledge and abetment. Recommend

  • Imran Qadri
    Sep 9, 2015 - 11:15PM

    Police has basically become bribe collecting force. If neutral person checks out their daily schedule then they would find that police in mobiles and on bikes is busy day and night doing nothing but collecting bribes. They don’t even spare push cart vendors. Recommend

  • Sep 10, 2015 - 12:17AM

    @Adil:

    What does it has to do with ISI ? Recommend

  • observer
    Sep 10, 2015 - 2:40AM

    This sounds like the handiwork of the friendly agency as in the case of scores of other journalists such as Saleem Sharzad.Recommend

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