The country is infamous for the alleged role government establishments including military play in extra judicial abductions of people who are critical to them including journalists, academicians, activists and students
Prominent Pakistani journalist, Taha Siddiqui who had condemned the behavior meted towards the wife and mother of Kulbhushan Jadhav was beaten up by armed men. The gang, which had over 10 men also made a futile attempt to kidnap him.
The news came into public notice after several Pakistani journalists tweeted about the shocking incident that was also reported by Pakistan’s prominent newspaper The Dawn. As per the report, Siddiqui, who is the Bureau Chief of Wion News also lost his valuables during the kidnapping attempt from which he survived by jumping out of the car of his possible abductors.
This is Taha Siddiqui (@TahaSSiddiqui) using Cyrils a/c. I was on my way to airport today at 8:20am whn 10-12 armed men stopped my cab & forcibly tried to abduct me. I managed to escape. Safe and with police now. Looking for support in any way possible #StopEnforcedDisappearances
— cyril almeida (@cyalm) January 10, 2018
Several other Journalists too tweeted in support of Taha Siddiqui.
Taha Siddiqui, a Pakistani journalist, was beaten and threatened, and only escaped by running through oncoming traffic. pic.twitter.com/odsasHDa85— Asad Hashim (@AsadHashim) January 10, 2018
Journalist community must condemn the kidnapping attempt of @TahaSSiddiqui with full unity no compromise on harassment of media
— Hamid Mir (@HamidMirPAK) January 10, 2018
Taha Siddiqui, one of Islamabad's finest journalists, was attempted abducted today. A court last year ordered the federal investigation agency to stop harassing him. Stay strong, Taha. https://t.co/jGwkucqcUR— Sune Engel Rasmussen (@SuneEngel) January 10, 2018
What remains to be seen is any suspected role the state-sponsored agencies may have had in the attempted kidnap attempt. The country is infamous for the alleged role government establishments including military play in extra-judicial abductions of people who are critical to them including journalists, academicians, activists, and students. Siddiqui himself has been on the radar of these agencies for a long time due to his writings that are critical towards Pakistani military establishment.
Pakistan ranks 139 out of 180 countries listed on the World Press Freedom Index 2017, by Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF).While it is not yet clear whether the attack was directly linked to his tweets that were critical towards the misconduct shown to the Jadhav family, the incident is an example to the intolerance towards criticism prevailing in the country.