LAHORE - Punjab Information and Culture Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan on Tuesday lashed out at reporters for asking a question during a photo exhibition held in memory of JI former chief Qazi Hussain Ahmad.

Since the minister was guest at the JI-organised function, reporters present there taking advantage of the situation asked for his comments regarding JI chief Sirajul Haq’s criticism on the PTI government. The query angered the minister and he started criticising media.

“You should be ashamed for asking such controversial questions at a ceremony held in memory of Qazi sahib,” he blasted, adding the media should not be out of bounds.

His remarks prompted a protest from journalists, who said that the media has the right to ask questions and the minister could choose not to answer. They demanded Chohan retract his statement and surrounded him when he started to leave. The journalists pointed out that Chohan had made political statements himself when he alluded to “looters” and “thieves” in his media talk.

The JI Youth Wing organised the photographic exhibition at Al-Hamra Cultural Complex.  Siraj on Monday questioned the PTI government’s efforts to turn Pakistan into an Islamic welfare state. Chohan was asked about Siraj’s claim that the ruling party had not taken any “step towards building a Madinah-like Islamic state”.

The comments of the minister who already created controversies on different occasions widely shared on social media with senior journalists and people from different walks of life expressed severe reservations over his attitude, condemning the remarks.

Many had demanded his removal from the office. Chohan’s remarks about stage actress Nargis, his twitter profile reference in which he had declared Hitler his ideal ruler and his attitude on different TV shows also came under discussion during the social media debate on him.

Meanwhile, JI chief Sirajul Haq who also visited the exhibition said during his interaction with media that although elections were held in the country and the people cast their votes with new hopes and expectations, yet the situation in the country became worse instead of showing any improvement.

He said that throughout his life, Qazi Hussain Ahmad had fought against the political system based on injustice and exploitation. He said the JI workers and leaders were following in the footprints of Qazi Hussain Ahmad in a bid to unite the masses against the feudal lords who were the symbols of oppression and tyranny. He said that these oppressive and corrupt ruling mafias had taken all political parties as hostages and were protecting their selfish interests by changing their parties.