Regulator issues notice to television channel for airing drama serial on incest
HUM TV, Pakistan’s leading entertainment television channel was served a show-cause notice by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) for airing scenes alluding to incest in its drama serial Udaari.
PEMRA, the regulatory body of electronic media in Pakistan sought an explanation from HUM TV by 25 May, 2016 for the portrayal of incest in its episodes aired on May 1 and May 8. The scene on May 8 showed a character of his aunt’s husband trying to lure his underprivileged niece to have intimate relations with him. The drama in an earlier episode aired on May 1, showed the same person trying to entice his minor stepdaughter.
PEMRA in a notification issued on May 10 said many viewers, especially parents were incensed by the drama serial. PEMRA notification said many viewers felt that presenting the ills of society in such a manner in plays was totally unacceptable. PEMRA said complainants felt that such plays become the vehicle for publicizing dark aspects of Pakistani society to the rest of the world and had appealed to PEMRA for action against HUM TV.
PEMRA has also claimed that according to phycology experts such scenes “incite the passions of people having such mentality” and was also against our societal norms.
PEMRA notification said the writer of the drama serial Farhat Ishtiaq, and the director Mohammed Ehtesham Uddin should have taken into consideration the Electronic Media Code of Conduct as directed by the Supreme Court as well as the social ethical values of our society. PEMRA added that broadcast of such a play reflects that irresponsibility and unprofessionalism of the organization’s monitoring committee.
Responding to the PEMRA notification, Momina Duraid co-producer of the drama serial Udaari Duraid said the play had very responsibly executed this concept with prime focus on educating our public and children. According to news report she described PEMRA show cause notice as unfortunate and said such actions would only harm the society.
Duraid hoped that as a responsible body PEMRA will understand that the serial was important and crucial for social reform and that it will not take any action against this serial until it had heard the viewpoint and evidence of the television channel.
Pakistan Press Foundation