TV reporter missing in South Pakistan World news

Family and colleagues say a reporter working for Pakistan’s leading Geo News Television has gone missing in the southern port city of Karachi.

Faheem Siddiqui, head of the Geo Bureau in Karachi, said police had registered a case of “kidnapping” without naming the accused.

Ali Imran Syed, 40, left home late Friday evening, telling his wife he would be back in half an hour, but did not return.

Azhar Abbas, head of Geo TV, said he had contacted provincial and federal officials to “help track down the missing reporter” and “ensure his safety”.

Siddiqui said the reporter’s abduction could be due to his work on recent political events, including the arrest of an opposition leader who is the son-in-law of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Human Rights Minister Shirin Mazari said in a tweet that no one should “disappear in a democracy”.

Pakistani media has come under renewed pressure from state institutions, which have sought to curb media headlines and ban the selection of guests for TV talk shows.

Journalists and proponents of press freedom often criticize the Pakistani military and security agencies for putting pressure on the media to stop critical coverage.

Bilal Farooqi, a Karachi-based Express Tribune journalist, was arrested in December last year on charges of spreading hate speech against the country’s military on social media.

In July, prominent Pakistani journalist Matiullah Jan was briefly detained. John is known for his criticism of Pakistan’s military and security agencies.

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