CPNE asks govt to constitute Press Constitute Press Council Immedialty -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

CPNE asks govt to constitute Press Constitute Press Council Immedialty

KARACHI: The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE), expressing deep concern over inordinate delay in the formulation of Pakistan Press Council has demanded the government to constitute it immediately. The demand was presented in .CPNE’s Standing Committee extended session held under the chairmanship of Senior Vice President CPNE Altaf Hasan Qureshi in Peshawar on Monday.

Talking about the stand taken by the committee CPNE Secretary general Dr Jabbar Khattak said that the committee expressed deep concern over the persistent delay in the establishment of press council and believed that the government was deliberately causing delays in this regard to propagate its lopsided agenda against theand other press.

Standing Committee of CPNE laid stress on the government to .,immediately constitute Pakistan .,Press Council to strengthen and Consolidate freedom of press in the country. The comn-iittee also regretted the suspension of consultative process between the CPNE md the government and felt that is suspension of dialogue had affected the process of harmonising the press related laws with the freedom of press and freedom of expression.

The committee also declared the Access to Infomiation Ordinance as inadequate and said that with-out taking the basic needs for the press freedom into account or having any consultation with CPNE the government had unilaterally imposed this ordinance which is unsatisfactory. The committee rejected the enforcement of Defamation Law and pointed out that it was aimed at intimidating and pressurising the press, which is totally unacceptable to CPNE.

The CPNE also strongly criticized the non-formulation of the rules for newspapers and other press to follow the Registration Ordinance and said that in this way the newspapers and other press were being forced to face a high degree of ambiguities and hurdles regarding Press Declaration. It further apprehend-ed that these delays in the formulation of the rules were aimed to take away the press registration authority of provinces and put it in the hands of federal bureaucracy.

CPNE reiterated that the government should soon initiate its efforts in consultation with CPNE to harmonise the Access to Information Ordinance and Defamation Law with the guarantee of press freedom and freedom of expression as envisaged in the constitution. The next session of CPNE’s Standing Committee will be held in October in Quetta in which CPNE, reviewing the government reaction in response to its Peshawar meeting demands, will evolve its future strategies.

Besides a large number of edi-tors of various newspapers and periodicals from all over the country, the others who attended the meeting included Vice President Khushnud Ali Khan (Daily Sahafat, Islamabad), Vice President, Pir Syed Shah (Daily Wahdat, Peshawar), Vice President, Waseem Ahmed (Daily Awam, Quetta), Secretary General, Dr Jabbar Khatak (Daily Awami Awaz, Karachi), Joint Secretary, Abdul Rasheed Ghazi (Daily Business Report, Faisalabad), Finance Secretary, Mahatab Khan (Daily Osaf, Islamabad), Former Presidents, Mujeeb-ur-Rehman Shwffi, Syed Fasih lqbal, Arif Nizan-ti, Ovais Aslam Ali (PPI), Mohammad Aslam Qazi (Daily Kawish, Hyderabad), Mushtaq Ahmed Qureshi (Monthly Naey Ufaq Karachi), Qazi Asad Abid (Daily Ibrat Hyderabad), Mumtaz A.
Source: Business recorder
Date:9/23/2003