PPF Weekly Content Monitoring Report September 26- October 2 -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

PPF Weekly Content Monitoring Report September 26- October 2

Pakistan Press Foundation

PEMRA Imposes fine on two channels

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has recommended imposing a fine on Neo TV over failure to edit the programme ‘Tabdeeli’ in which Zaid Hamid used offensive comments against scholars, politicians, advocates, judges and journalists.

The News, The Nation, Express Tribune on September 30 reported that the 65th meeting of PEMRA Council of Complaints (CoC) held on September 29 at the Regional office of PEMRA in which the CoC had recommended to impose Rs 200,000 (1914.24 US Dollars) fine on Neo TV.

Dawn on September 30 published a follow-up story over the issue ‘PEMRA has taken the notice of two programmes of Neo TV and Channel 24 on September 15 for airing offensive content against a religious minority. The writer Zulqernain Tahir states that CoC of the PEMRA on September 29 has sacked the complaints of Ahmadi community against both the channels and referred it as ‘non-maintainable’. PEMRA took the decision after a mob entered the authority’s office in the Cantonment area of Lahore and asked the authority to nullify the complaints and chanted slogans against the Ahmadi community.

The above mentioned issue was covered by only four newspapers Dawn, The News, The Nation, Express Tribune while other newspapers specially Urdu newspapers Jang, Dunya, Roznama Express, Nawa-i-Waqt, Pakistan, Intikhab, Quami Akhbar, Amn, Roznama Pakistan did not covered the story.

In other story reported by The News on October 1 and Express Tribune on October 2 reported that PEMRA (CoC) Islamabad has also imposed a fine of Rs 500,000 on Channel 92 for telecasting unjustifiable and inaccurate analysis against NAB chairman in its current affairs show ‘Muqabil’. The allegations included retirement against the rules from armed forces and induction into civil services were illegally leveled by the anchor persons of the programme. PEMRA ordered Channel 92 to present evidences of the allegations against the chairman. But the channel failed to provide the evidences so the regulatory body declared the channel accountable of telecasting fake news against NAB and asked the channel to air an apology or its license will be revoked.

Jang on September 30 has quoted the sources of PEMRA that a private television channels’ anchor Dr. Shahid Masood has apologized from Chief Justice of Sindh High Court over court orders. The views of Dr. Shahid Masood expressed in his programme on June 22 2016 come under the contempt of court. The writer of the story did not mention the name of channel in this story.

PEMRA seeks government’s help to stop Indian DTH’s sale

PEMRA has requested provincial, federal, AJK governments and other bodies including Federal Board of Revenue, Federal Investigation Agency, Pakistan Telecom Authority, State Bank of Pakistan and provincial police heads for help to stop illegal Indian Direct to Home (DTH) in Pakistan.

The Nation, Jang and The News on September 28 reported the story that PEMRA Chairman Absar Alam has written letters to the heads of the institutions under PEMRA Ordinance Section 33-A and informed them about the sale of illegal Indian DTH in different areas of Pakistan.

The PEMRA had also issued a reminder to all television channels that only ten percent foreign content which includes six percent of Indian content is allowed during twenty four hours. TV channels and cable operators have also been warned to stop this practice otherwise strict action will be taken against them after October 15.

In other story covered by Business Recorder and Balochistan Express on September 28 states that Chief Minister Balochistan Sanaullah Zehri had handed over the letter to PEMRA Chairman Absar Alam regarding the crackdown against illegal Indian DTH.

Neo News aired a ticker, Samaa aired a breaking news on September 29 while The News and Jang on September 30 also reported that a press release issued by PEMRA on September 29 states that because of large number of complaints against unnecessary Indian content PEMRA has requested the TV channels and distribution networks to stop airing excessive Indian content and channels through illegal Direct to Home (DTH). The complainants are seriously concerned over this issue because of the ongoing tension between India and Pakistan. They have also recommended the regulatory body to immediately ban the broadcast and distribution of illegal Indian content and DTH.

Dunya on September 27 aired a ticker, Abb Takk, Aaj News, ARY News, Dawn, Express News, Neo News, Samaa TV aired tickers, headlines, breaking news and detailed news on October 1 while The News, Business Recorder, Pakistan Today, Dunya, Amn, Qaumi Akhbar on October 2 reported that a meeting was held between Chief Minister (CM) of Punjab Shahbaz Sharif and Chairman PEMRA Absar Alam on October 1 in which PEMRA has announced to start a crackdown against illegal Indian channels in all major cities of the country from October 15. While speaking on the occasion, Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif stated that Punjab government will extend full cooperation to the regulatory body in this regard.

The issue of crackdown against Indian DTH by PEMRA was also discussed in Neo News programme “Live with Nasrullah Malik” by PEMRA chairman Absar Alam and host Nasrullah Malik.

Director of Pakistan’s largest Media group kidnapped and free under mysterious circumstances

Director Coordination of the Jang Group, Abid Abdullah was kidnapped and taken away by unidentified assailants from the Industrial Estate area near Hayatabad, Peshawar.

The News, The Nation, Pakistan Today and Jang on September 29 reported the news Abid Abdullah along with his driver Zafar Hussain, left the Jang printing press when unknown assailants stopped their car near the Umar Glass Factory.

While on September 30, Dawn and Business Recorder and October 1 Nawa-i-Waqt reported that the kidnappers freed Abid Abdullah and he reached Islamabad safely.

SHC orders to restore BOL TV’s license

The Sindh High Court (SHC) has ordered to restore the license of BOL TV on September 28.

Dawn, Regional Times, Pakistan Today and Amn on September 29 reported that Justice Zulfiqar Ahmad during the hearing of case had declared the PEMRA’s decision to suspend BOL’s license as illegal and allowed the channel to re-launch its transmission. The TV channel was set for launch last year but the decision was canceled after Axact, the parents company got involved in a fake degree scandal.

The news Bol TV’s license restoration was also covered by different channels on September 28 ARY News aired headline while Neo News aired a ticker. The host of Neo News “Khabar Ke Peche” Fawad Chaudhry also discussed the issue of Bol TV from its ban to restoration of license.

Security system installed at media houses, press clubs

A foolproof security arrangement is being installed at all press clubs and print and electronic media houses throughout the country to prevent any problematic situation.

Business Recorder on September 29 reported that while addressing a press conference, Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Mohsin Shahnawaz Ranjha said that after meeting with media bodies including Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE), All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS), Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) and Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) the decision was taken and under this system “panic alert buttons” were being set up at all media organizations.

Media house attack case

ARY News on September 26 aired a ticker which states that two special prosecutors of Rangers accepted to proceed the media house attack case.

Pakistan Today, Business Recorder and Regional Times on September 27 while Abb Takk channel on September 28 aired a ticker which reported that Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) has accepted the charge sheet submitted by the police in two cases related to Sedition riots and attack on media house on August 22 and judge transferred the case to ATC II for further trial. According to the charge sheet police have arrested at least 50 accused including MQM leaders and workers in the case

While the other stories published by Intekhab and Roznama Pakistan on September 27 states that the ATC had granted bail to MQM leader Khuwaja Izhar-ul-Hassan and imposed penalty of Rs 25,000 (239.28 US Dollars) in three cases.

Capital TV, Dunya and Neo News on September 26 aired tickers while The News and Dawn on September 29 reported that the city Council Session of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) held after six and a half year on September 28 in which Firdous Shamim Naqvi of the MQM has presented a resolution against MQM chief Altaf Hussain over his provocative speech on August 22 which resulted in the attack on media houses and the resolution was approved unanimously.

Samaa aired ticker and headline and ARY News aired breaking news on September 28 while Dunya newspaper on September 29 also reports that ATC has ordered none bail-able arrest warrants of MQM chief Altaf Hussain and leaders Farooq Sattar, Amir Khan, Qamar Mansoor and Shahid Pasha and to produce them in the court on October 17.

Other Media Related Stories

Samaa on October 2 aired a ticker which reported that Khurram Sherzaman demanded from PEMRA to ban the statements of MQM Chief Altaf Hussain.

Regional Times on September 29 reported that even after four years of Abdul Haq Baloch’s murder his killers still remain free. Abdul Haq Baloch was the correspondent of ARY News channel and general secretary of Khuzdar Press Club. He was murdered on September 29, 2012 in Khuzdar by unknown assailants.

Dawn on September 28 reported that a special ceremony was organized by Pak Army in Fizaghat on September 27 where Brigade Commander Mingora Brig Zafar Iqbal inaugurated a monument for journalist Sirajudiin to remember his services in the field of journalism. During the time when Taliban were on rise in Swat Valley, Sirajuddin received many threats from extremist for his reporting but he continued his job without any fear. The story does not contain important information, reporter should have mentioned more details about the journalist like when and where he was killed and from which media organization he belonged too.

Roznama Pakistan and Nawa-i-Waqt on September 28 covered the story that chairman of Pakistan Television (PTV) Ata-ul-Haq Qasmi came for 3 days visit to Karachi headquarters of PTV. During his visit he conducted different meetings with the head office departments, producers, writers and artists. Members from different departments informed chairman about the different problems that Karachi office is facing, while the chairman assured them that all the problems will be solved on priority basis.

Amn on September 27 reported that secretary information of Parliament, Mohsin Ranjha was elected as the head of journalist protection committee. The committee will monitor the measures taken for the rights of journalist and take steps for the security of journalists and journalist organization.

Dawn on October 1 also reported that a memorial reference was jointly organized by Pakistan association of photojournalists and Karachi press club to pay tribute to the photojournalist Mujeeb-ur-Rehman and his work and dedication in the field. Speakers at the event also announced to establish a photography institute in the name of Mr Rehman.

The News and Jang on September 27 reported that the Coalition on Right to Information (CRTI) honors the RTI champion Award to the correspondent of Geo TV Azaz Syed for his use of RTI laws at the federal and provincial levels for getting information. CRTI in affiliation with the Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) honor awards to two individuals one from the journalists category and other from the citizens category. Azaz won the award from journalist category while Sarmad Ali received the award from the citizen’s category.

The Nation and Roznama Pakistan on September 29 reported that while addressing at the conference on provincial Rights to Information Laws: issues and challenges. The advisor to Sindh CM on information Maula Bux Chandio has urged the media to play their role in creating awareness among masses about the advantages of Right to Information Bill.

Abb Takk on September 26 aired breaking news covering that anchorperson of Abb Takk News channel Sana Faisal got hospitalized by eating poisonous ice-cream. An unknown young boy who called himself as Sana Faisal’s fan firstly asked to take selfie with her than gave her ice-cream and insisted to eat it.

Neo News on October 2 also aired detailed news which covers the family fun fair for journalists organized in Karachi Press Club.

Nawa-i-Waqt on October 2 reported that former senior art editor of Nawa-i-Waqt Raziuddin passed away at the age of 85.

During the week PPF monitored 29 news, tickers, headlines and programs related to Pakistani media that were covered in the following television channels – 92 News, Aaj News, AbbTakk, ARY News, Capital TV, Dawn News, Dunya News, Express News, Geo News, Jaag News, Khyber News, KTN, Neo News, News One, Samaa and TV One.

There were 51 news stories, editorials and photographs published in 16 daily English and Urdu language newspapers that include Dawn, The News, The Nation, Express Tribune, Business Recorder, Pakistan Today, Regional Times, Balochistan Express, Jang, Dunya, Roznama Express, Nawa-i-Waqt, Roznama Pakistan, Intikhab, Quami Akhbar and Amn