HRCP calls for justice in suspected targeted killing of Hidayatullah Lohar

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Karachi (Press Release); The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) calls on the Sindh government to ensure that the murder of political activist Hidayatullah Lohar is investigated transparently and independently of any external pressure.

The protestors who were detained on holding a sit-in against the murder, including Lohar’s two sons, must be released unconditionally and allowed to exercise their right to freedom of peaceful assembly.

Lohar was gunned down in Nasirabad on 16 February 2024 by two assailants on a motorbike. HRCP’s fact-finding report, released earlier today, reveals that the murder was most likely a targeted killing linked to Lohar’s nationalist activism, on account of which he had been forcibly disappeared twice. In the absence of any other motive, the mission found this to be a credible assumption.

The mission also noted with concern the police’s initial reluctance to register an FIR naming specific individuals as the accused—despite testimonies from Lohar’s family and CCTV footage of the incident—until a court order directed this be done almost two weeks after the murder.

The Sindh government must compensate and protect Lohar’s family, given their vulnerability as vocal activists against enforced disappearances.

The perpetrators of the murder must be brought to justice irrespective of any possible links to powerful quarters.

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