CPNE concerned over newspaper industry’s poor condition, other issues
PESHAWAR: The Council of Pakistan Newspapers Editors (CPNE) has expressed its grave concern over the issues including cyber crime bill, deteriorating economic condition of newspapers industry and insecurity and sanctions on freedom of journalism, and demanded of the provincial governments to initiate measures for the provision of immediate security to media owners and workers and economically protect the regional newspapers.
The demand was made in a meeting of standing committee of the CPNE that was held in Peshawar under the chair of the President CPNE Zia Shahid. The meeting participants expressed concerns over the problems faced by the medium and small newspapers and journals of KP.
Severe concerns were expressed over the Cyber Crime Bill in the meeting and it was decided to review the bill in detail in consultation with various media organisations and legal and constitutional experts so that those provisions the bill could be identified which badly affect the freedom of expression. A resolution in this regard was passed unanimously in which it was reiterated that the deep attachment with freedom of press, freedom of expression, right to access to information awareness and other basic human rights and stress the need for responsible use of all these rights so that basic human rights and basic liberties could be protected.
In the resolution unbridled freedom and unethical, unconstitutional and anti-democracy activities were strongly condemned and favored the appropriate legislation and necessary measures to curb such activities. It was urged in the meeting to improve the economic condition of the newspapers and decided to arrange the various programmes for the economic stability of small and medium media houses.
On this occasion it was decided to establish Media Development and Training Institute under the auspices of the CPNE. The federal government its institutions and provincial governments were stressed to initiate effective measures for the elimination of unannounced censorship in Balochistan and KP in the meeting.
The editors of KP have demanded the elimination of Provincial Media Act 2013. Provincial Information Minister Mushtaq Ghani and Secretary Information Tahir Hassan specially participated in the meeting and assured full cooperation in resolution of all problems being faced by regional newspapers editors and journalists and said that KP government has established media cell equipped with modern technology for the facilitation of media persons, adding that appropriate funds have been allocated in the budget for the welfare of journalists.
They further said that terrorism is the national issue and the government is making all possible efforts to address it.
The meeting was attended by Secretary General Ejaz ul Haq (Daily Express), Vice Presidents Rehmat Ali Razi (Daily Taqat), Syed Haroon Shah (Daily Wadhat Peshawar), Anwar Sajdi (Intikhab) senior members Arif Nizami, Jamil Athar Qazi, senior editors Sharif Farooq, Dr Jabbar Khattak, Kazim Khan (Daily Times), Tariq Saeed (Pakistan Observer), Faridullah Khan (Daily Ausaf) and Naeem Mustafa (Daily Pakistan). At the end of the meeting Chief Minister KP Pervaiz Khattak hosted a dinner in honor of participants and gave a detailed briefing about the welfare projects and performance of provincial government and assured his full cooperation in resolution of problems being faced by the newspapers.
The CM also assured that government would implement the free, fair and transparent media policy for the economic stability of national and regional newspapers.