August 22, 2016
KARACHI - One person was killed and several others injured Monday when MQM activists, who were on a hunger strike for four days, went on a rampage here and attacked the office of ARY News Television alleging biased coverage.
Several journalists of various media organization present there were attacked by the activists of the Mutthaida Qaumi Movement (MQM). The protesters pelted stones and resorted to heavy aerial firing that wounded people, including women. “At least one person was brought dead (to JPMC) while several others were injured,” head of the Emergency Ward at Jinnah Hospital, Seemin Jamali, said.
Several vehicles, including a police van, were damaged. Trouble began when hundreds of workers attending a hunger strike of MQM outside the Karachi Press Club resorted to violence as they marched towards the busy Zainab market.
The protestors stormed the office of ARY channel and attacked its employees. They also ransacked some shops and forced shopkeepers to close them down. The television channel in a statement said the protesters belonged to MQM.
According to the channel, MQM chief Altaf Hussain in his speech through a telephone call from London earlier Monday told the party workers “to storm the offices of TV channels”. The workers also set up bonfires on the road and fired aerial shots as they marched towards the Governor House. Police resorted to tear-gas shelling and aerial firing to push back the protesters. The MQM had been holding the hunger camp for the past three days to protest the disappearance and arrest of their workers.
The MQM has alleged that since a “clean-up operation”began in Karachi in October 2013, paramilitary Rangers and police have targeted its leaders and workers.
Meanwhile Dawn reported that a Samaa Television DSNG van was also attacked. Additionally, a police van and motorcycle of a traffic police official were reportedly set on fire.
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A study conducted by JournalismPakistan.com and Communications Research Strategies on the economic situation of slain journalists' families and journalists displaced due to security threats.