Pemra wants channels to follow code of conduct
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has deferred the complaint of Federal Minister for Finance, Senator Ishaq Dar till next meeting on the request of his legal counsel, who requested adjournment for submitting his response to the written arguments given by ARY News
The decision was taken here at the 36th meeting of Pemra Council of Complaints, held under the chair of Ms. Shamim Humayun at Pemra Headquarters, Islamabad on May 13.
Whereas, the complaints filed by Mrs. Saira Afzal Tarar, Minister of State for National Health Services, Regulations & Coordination and Senator Rehman Malik were adjourned giving final opportunity to the complainants as well as respondents to appear before the Council in its next meeting.
In the proceedings with regard to complaint filed by Ziauddin Yousaf Zai (father of Malala Yousaf Zai), the council obtained his narrative and adjourned further proceedings on request of the respondent channels i.e. ARY News and Sach. The complaint filed by Rector, Comsats Institute of Information Technology, Islamabad was deferred on request of Aaj TV with directions to file its reply by May 30, 2016.
While hearing the complaint filed by Ms. Farah Razzaq, Regional Director Punjab Small Industries Corporation against Dunya News for airing defamatory news, the council issued warning to the channel, further directing it to air apology at prime time. Channel was also warned of strict action if found guilty of repeating violation of same nature. Whereas, the complaint of Ms. Haleema against Geo News, ARY News, Aaj TV, Dunya News and Samaa was reviewed and the Council issued warning the channels for violating the sanctity of private life and privacy of citizen of Pakistan, in sheer violation of Constitution of Pakistan and Pemra Code of Conduct 2015.
Channels were also directed to educate their field correspondents while covering such issues. The Council further reprimanded Aaj TV for showing casual attitude towards the Council and abstaining from appearing before the Council in its previous meetings.
The complaint filed by Spokesperson of Foreign Office against ARY News and Channel-92 was also deferred with directions to the complainant to file documentary evidence in support of his complaint by May 20.The request received from Tariq Asad, Shuhada Foundation was placed before the council and subsequently was turned down as the matter had already been disposed of in 32nd meeting.
Other members of the Council including Ms. Nuzhat Fatima, Prof. Dr. Maqsood Jafri, Dr. Shah Jahan Sayed, Haroon ur Rasheed and Muhammad Farooq (RGM / Secretary, Council of Complaints, Islamabad) were also present in the meeting. The proceedings of the council were adjourned till June 03, 2016 at 3pm.