Islamabad: Recently a a prominent journalist, Cyril Almeida, of Dawn was banned from leaving Pakistan because of his front-page report on a rift between the military and the civilian government over the military’s covert support to militant groups like the Haqqani network, Taliban and the LeT. As a result on Wednesday a leading Pakistani daily asked the civilian and military establishment why action against JeM chief Masood Azhar and JuD’s Hafiz Saeed was “danger” to the country’s national security.
The editorial titled ‘How to Lose Friends And Alienate People’ said the government and the military instead of taking actions against Azhar and Saeed was lecturing the press.
“The report by Almeida has been called ‘fabricated’, and ‘speculative reporting’. But the government and military top brass in yesterday’s meeting delivered no explanation for why government MNA’s are protesting the visible presence of banned outfits in Pakistan. Or why possible action against Masood Azhar, or Hafiz Saeed is a danger to ‘national security’. Or why Pakistan faces increasing isolation? We’re all earsm.
“Instead, how dare the government and military top brass lecture the press on how to do their job. How dare they treat a feted reporter like a criminal. And how dare they imply that they have either the right or the ability or the monopoly to declare what Pakistan’s ‘national interest’ is,” it said.
Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) leader and Pathankot terror attack mastermind Azhar and Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, roam freely in Pakistan and are believed to have the protection of the military.