Sindh: Magazine Censored in Pakistan
The India-based Sindhi magazine ‘Sindhyun Jo Sansar’ was banned by Pakistani authorities for printing “provocative articles” against
Below is an article published by
Dr Ghansham Das G Hotumatani, a Pakistani national who graduated from Chandka Medical College Larkana and migrated to
The magazine is not widely circulated as it was run by one man. Dr Hotumatni printed only a thousand copies of the magazine, mostly containing articles by writers from Sindh or material already published in other magazines from Sindh. He also sent copies to
The Sindh Home Department, through a notification on Wednesday, banned the magazine and ordered the confiscation of all its copies wherever found in the open market. It also ordered action against the editor, publisher, distributors and the sellers of the magazine.
Sindh Home Secretary Ghulam Muhammad Mohatarem told Daily Times he did not remember why the magazine had been banned. “I don’t remember exactly why we have banned the magazine as I am out of my office and the related file of this issue is lying in my office and whenever I will be at my office, I will be able to describe why we have banned the magazine,” he said.
Journalists and lawyers expressed anger over the ban. Lawyer and human rights activist Ayaz Latif Palejo condemned the ban and termed it an attempt to stop the “voice of the masses”.
“Gone are the days when banning a publication affected the actual cause of that magazine. In this age of the internet, such bans are nothing but a nonsensical attempt to stop the people’s voice,” Ayaz said. In
Prominent Sindhi drama writer and educationalist Hafeez Kumbhar rejected the ban and said it reflected the double standards of the Pakistani government. “On the one hand, Pakistan has started peace talks with India, while on the other hand, it [Pakistan] has also started banning different publications from India,” Kumbhar said, adding that the ban on the magazine would not affect the people’s ongoing struggle to express their views. “After the introduction of the internet, the world has shrunk to a village and even after the ban the material will reach the people somehow, so the ban will not have an effect,” he said.Tens of thousands of Sindhi speaking and native residents of Sindh migrated to