Press Statement

Pakistan: Journalist’s body exhumed for second post mortem

18 Mar, 2020

The body of the journalist Aziz Memon was exhumed on March 15 after a joint investigative team (JIT) found the initial post mortem report ‘unsatisfactory’. Memon was allegedly murdered in Naushero Feroze district on February 16. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) expresses its concern over the handling of the case and demands a formal inquiry.

The head of the JIT, tasked with looking into the alleged killing, sought permission from the court over recommendations of senior doctors to conduct the post mortem again. The investigation team claimed it found many flaws in the previous post mortem report.

The dead body of 56-year-old journalist with Kawish Television Network (KTN) TV and Sindhi-language Daily Kawish was recovered on February 16 from a canal near Gaddo Bridge in the Naushahro Feroze district near where he lived, after locals reported a body floating in the water.

In their post mortem report issued on March 6, Dr Tahseen Hussain and Dr Zahid Hussain Shaikh, of Mehrabpur Rural Health Center, stated Memon died of asphyxiation, as a result of suffocation. His body was allegedly recovered with cable or wire tied around his neck.Yet a report presented before the National Assembly’s (NA) standing committee contradicted this finding, declaring the death a result of natural causes.

Following the exhumation, the judicial magistrate and members of the medical team performed a second post mortem. The results are yet to be released.

The journalist’s fraternity and family members of the slain journalists are demanding the formulation of judicial commission consisting of judges of the Supreme Court and the High Court to investigate the matter.

The IFJ said: IFJ urges Pakistan’s government to conduct an urgent and impartial investigation into this case. The handling of the investigation into Aziz Memon’s death has continued to compound the grief of his family and created anger in the journalist community in Pakistan. They must be given answers, evidence and justice”.