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What happened to slain Pak journalist's call records?

Last updated on: June 7, 2011 12:45 IST

What happened to slain Pak journalist's call records?

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The call record of slain Pakistani journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad's cellular phone has been erased, a media report said on Tuesday. The call log of the 18 days before his abduction and murder has been wiped out from the system, said the report.

The last call made by Shahzad that is reflected in the log was on May 12, seventeen days before his abduction on May 29, according to data obtained by The Express Tribune newspaper.

Hamza Ameer, the brother-in-law of the slain journalist, said he had found Shahzad's mobile phone switched off when he tried to contact him at 5:42 pm on May 29.


Image: Relatives and colleague carry the casket of Pakistani journalist Saleem Shahzad for burial at a graveyard after funeral prayers in Karachi
Photographs: Athar Hussain/Reuters
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No call records for 18 days!

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Shahzad made his last call, according to the data, on May 12 near a cell phone tower installed atop a bank in Islamabad's Blue Area.

Shahzad, according to the cellular phone data, was in Islamabad between May 1 and May 12.

A close friend of Shahzad told PTI that he had been able to call the slain journalist's mobile phone early on May 30 but the call was disconnected after several rings.


Image: A journalist hangs a lock across his lips during a protest against Saleem Shahzad's death
Photographs: Athar Hussain/Reuters
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Police yet to register a case

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Shahzad, who worked for Hong Kong-based Asia Times Online and Italian news agency Adnkronos International, was abducted shortly after he alleged in an article that Al Qaeda had infiltrated the Pakistan Navy.

Journalists' groups and rights organisations have said they suspect Shahzad was picked up by intelligence operatives, but Pakistan's powerful Inter Services Intelligence has denied it was in any way involved in his kidnapping and murder.

Hamza Ameer said police were yet to register a "proper case" for the abduction and murder of Shahzad.


Image: A file photo of Pakistani journalists Syed Saleem Shahzad (Right) and Qamar Yousafzai
Photographs: Saeed Ali Achakzai/Reuters
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Shahzad's body was found in a canal

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He said he filed a complaint after Shahzad went missing on May 30.

Later, the Margalla police station converted the complaint into an FIR without applying the law for abduction-cum-murder, Ameer said.

Another FIR was registered at Mandi Bahauddin in Punjab, where Shahzad's body was found in a canal, and his autopsy was conducted in the district headquarters hospital in the town on May 30.

The Punjab police chief has issued a notification for setting up a three-member committee headed by a deputy inspector general to probe the killing.


Image: Syed Saleem Shahzad
Photographs: Reuters
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