Journalist Nasrullah Gadhani Succumbs After Fatal Attack

Having been critically injured in a gun attack near Mirpur Mathelo earlier in the week, he passed away during treatment in Karachi

Journalist Nasrullah Gadhani Succumbs After Fatal Attack

Journalist Nasrullah Gadani, who was critically injured in a gun attack in Mirpur Mathelo earlier in the week, succumbed to his wounds during treatment at the Aga Khan University Hospital in Karachi early on Friday.

The late journalist was riding on a motorcycle when he was intercepted and attacked by unidentified armed assailants riding a motorcycle near Kori Goth, located around 12 kilometres from the town of Mirpur Mathelo in the Ghotki district on Tuesday morning. As a result of the attack, he was left critically wounded.

He was rushed to a local hospital, where doctors provided first-aid treatment. He was later shifted to a private hospital in the Rahim Yar Khan District in southern Punjab for surgery on his lungs. There, doctors disclosed that Gadani had suffered bullet wounds in the abdomen, which badly affected his lungs and caused constant bleeding. Despite their best efforts, Gadani's condition did not improve, and his chances of survival began to dwindle.

He was eventually shifted to the Aga Khan Hospital in Karachi for treatment via an air ambulance, where he passed away on Friday morning.

The slain journalist's mother expressed pride over the brave work done by her son. She added that her son had embraced martyrdom instead of accepting the slavery of feudal lords.

Gadani was affiliated with the Sindhi language daily newspaper, Awami Awaz, and was known for his fearless reporting on public issues. He was a vocal critic of political leaders and elected representatives in Sindh for failing to address the public issues. 

Local journalists and journalism organizations in Ghotki have shied away from openly condemning the attack on Gadani, allegedly due to the involvement of a political leader affiliated with the ruling party.

The death of the journalist, however, drew widespread condemnation by people from all walks of life, with journalists terming it as another attempt to suppress the voice of the people.

Protests have been staged in Hyderabad, Thatta, Sujawal, Sukkur, and Larkana to denounce the attack.

Noted journalists from Sindh, including Javed Maher, Mahboob Brohi, Imtiaz Dahrani, Shabbir Bhatti, and Shoukat Somroo, have urged the Sindh government to launch a probe into the brutal killing of the journalist.

Freedom Network Pakistan, in a statement, said that this was the second death of a journalist in three days in Pakistan. The first was Kamran Dawar, who was shot dead outside his house in North Waziristan on Tuesday, May 21, 2024. 

"Two brutal murders of two young journalists in the span of three days speak volumes of deeply-rooted impunity for crimes against journalists in Pakistan, media watchdog Freedom Network Executive Director Iqbal Khattak said Friday in a press statement.

He said that both the Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments are obligated under the law of the land to prosecute the perpetrators of crimes against media in the country. "Murderers of these two journalists should not go unpunished, otherwise, we will hold the two governments responsible for letting the journalists' killings go unabated."

The author is a practicing lawyer and freelance journalist. His areas of interest are cultural diversity and socio-political issues of Sindh.