Dar issues notice to ARY for airing false facts in programme
ISLAMABAD: A spokesman for the Finance Minister Senator Muhammad Ishaq Dar Thursday said a complaint had been lodged with the Pemra against the ARY Communications Private Ltd and one of its anchorpersons for publishing and broadcasting defamatory statements in a programme.
It should be noted that this was not the first time that the said channel was issued a notice for telling lies. The spokesman said legal notices separately served on Chief Executive Officer of ARY News Salman Iqbal and the anchorperson sought damages of Rs1 billion on account of defamatory statements in the said programme aiming to malign the public opinion against the finance minister.
According to the spokesman, the finance minister had also sought a proper apology from the ARY and the anchorperson within 14 days from the issuance of legal notices, i.e. February 27, 2016, and demanded from them to publish retraction in two English dailies and two Urdu newspapers having nationwide circulation.
The spokesman said the programme was aired on the ARY News Channel on February 19, 2016 during which the anchorperson, without any evidence, attributed problems faced by the government such as PIA and other privatization matters etc. to the finance minister and advised him to arrange for his “bail before arrest”.
The anchor even tried to scandalise liaison by the minister with the leadership of political parties like the MQM and PPP as if he was doing something immoral. The legal notices, therefore, stated that it was a matter of fact that through the said programme, publications of a defamatory character were made with malafide and ulterior motive of attacking, inter alia, the complainant’s integrity and character, with the knowledge and purpose that if made, the same would cause irreparable harm and damage to his reputation domestically and internationally.
The utterances by the anchor in the said programme are totally false and fabricated and present totally false and absolutely fictitious account of the facts, the notices further said.
The channel and the anchorperson violated the binding provisions of Electronic Media Code of Conduct, 2015 by false and misleading statement, ridiculing the eminent politician, a public office holder and a professional chartered accountant with a lifetime experience acquired working in Pakistan and abroad. The finance minister, accordingly in a complaint has requested the Pemra to take an appropriate legal action against the ARY channel and its anchorperson, the spokesman concluded.