The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Cybercrime Wing while conducting a forensic lab of the evidential item (mobile phone) finds ‘no such data’ of sexual harassment against the Benazir Bhutto Shaheed University Lyari (BBSUL) VC Prof Dr Akhtar Baloch.

A sitting member of the Provincial Assembly of Sindh (PAS), Shazia Karim Sanghaar (Shazia Umar) on January 16, 2022, on her official letterhead has lodged a written to the additional director of the FIA cyber-crime wing stating; “Mr Akhtar the vice-chancellor of the said university [BBSUL] harassed from Mobile that [is] why I made a complaint to the higher authorities and after some time he sends me vulgar, sexual and immoral stickers through his WhatsApp.”

The BBSUL VC, however, denied the allegations and voluntarily submitted his mobile phone to the enquiry committee. Meanwhile, the Sindh government sent Dr Akhtar Baloch on a 45-day forced leave after allegations of sexual harassment against him. The provincial government assigned an additional charge to Prof Dr Amjad Siraj Memon Vice-Chancellor Jinnah Sindh Medical University (JSMU) to manage the day-to-day affairs of the varsity. Later, the government extended Prof Akhtar’s forced leave, but after the passage of over six months, the enquiry team is yet to conclude its investigation against the VC.

However, the facts and findings of the FIA forensic report state; “The FIA cybercrime’s Digital Forensic Lab Sindh, has received the evidentiary item on June 10, 2022, from Akhtar Baloch which is approximately 5 months after the complaint to the chief minister and during which the said evidence also remained in the custody of the police as the enquiry report”.

The FIA forensic reports read that evidential item data is extracted via logical extraction that is being searched for sexual stickers. “However, no such type of data was found from the evidential item. The presence of the malware could not be ascertained.”

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Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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