Minister appears before Pemra council
ISLAMABAD: Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid made a voluntary appearance before the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority’s (Pemra) Council of Complaints on Thursday in a case instituted by TV anchor Dr Shahid Masood.
Talking to journalists later, the minister said he was not legally bound to appear before the council. But “I appeared on my own considering it a moral obligation so that a precedent can be set that all are equal before the law.” The minister said it was the responsibility of every citizen to follow the law in letter and spirit.
“I am here and it was also the responsibility of Dr Shahid Masood to appear, but he did not,” he said, adding that he had commented on a TV programme of Dr Shahid that featured unethical conversations.
He was of the view that the Pemra council must have an opportunity to determine ‘who is wrong and who is right’. He clarified that his comments were not in violation of the code of conduct issued by the regulatory body.
However, he said, the matter was with the council and it would be inappropriate to comment on it further.
The minister said he wanted to listen to the complainant himself and present his stance before the council, but the complainant had left for the US, adding that “may be, he (Dr Masood) had some compulsion”.
Mr Rashid quoted the complainant’s counsel as saying that his client was in the US till April 2.
The hearing was adjourned till April 8.