Police arrest media owner after scuffle in capital for airing ‘derogatory’ remarks about Pakistani minister - GulfToday

Police arrest media owner after scuffle in capital for airing ‘derogatory’ remarks about Pakistani minister


A combo picture shows Mohsin Baig holding a gun in an altercation with officials in Islamabad on Wednesday. Twitter photo

Tariq Butt, Correspondent / AP

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Wednesday raided the residence of media personality Mohsin Jamil Baig in Islamabad and arrested him after a dramatic scuffle in which the man fired a pistol toward police and hit one officer in the head with the weapon, injuring him.

Baig, owner and editor-in-chief of news outlet Online and the Urdu-language Daily Jinnah newspaper, was arrested days after he appeared on a TV talk show. On the show he suggested that Prime Minister Imran Khan had showed favouritism by granting an award to a government minister, Murad Saeed, with whom he has a close friendship.

The government after the programme launched a complaint with the FIA that acted promptly and arrested Baig for his primary role in the entire debate.

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Authorities say police and the FIA went to Baig’s home on a complaint from Saeed, who is the minister of communication. In his complaint, Saeed had accused Baig of tarnishing his character.

As officers tried to arrest Baig, he pulled out a pistol and fired in their direction but didn’t hit anyone, said Mohammad Ali, a police inspector.

The raid continued for an hour owing to resistance and the accused could be seen carrying the arm at the time of his arrest. He has been shifted to a police station while the police have also sent a team to arrest his son.

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Pictures circulating on social media showed Baig beating an officer from the Federal Investigation Agency. Baig was then arrested.

Police later opened a separate case against Baig on charges he attacked FIA officers and injured one of them.

Meanwhile, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Political Communication Shahbaz Gill shared a video, reportedly of today's confrontation outside Baig's residence, in which the media personality can be seen toting a gun, manhandling an unidentified individual and kicking him down to his knees and striking his face with the butt of the gun. As Baig assumes a shooting stance, gunshots are heard, the video shows.

Baig’s family told reporters that police and officials from FIA arrested him without giving any reason for the arrest.

Baig’s arrest drew condemnation from Pakistani journalists on social media. Dozens of journalists also rallied outside Baig’s media house to express solidarity with him. The government gave no immediate comment.


On Feb.16, the PTI minister Murad Saeed filed a complaint against Baig. It stated that on February 10, Mohsin Baig "assassinated his character by using abusive and immoral language in a talk show namely G for Gharida," Samaa TV reported.

The alleged in presence of other participants relate a baseless story with derogatory remarks and the same was thereafter shared through social media including YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook, it read.

The FIR added that the accused tried to distort Saeed's image for ulterior motives and it also led to cultivate and induce a natural person to engage in a "sexually explicit act."

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