Government should withdraw draconian steps against Press freedom: CPNE -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Government should withdraw draconian steps against Press freedom: CPNE

KARACHI, May 06(PPI): Karachi Members of Council of Pakistan Newspapers Editors meeting Tuesday under chairmanship of CPNE President Arif Nizami demanded through a resolution that government should withdraw immediately draconian measures restricting press freedom under amendments promulgated on November 3, 2007.

The meeting declared in presence of these draconian laws of November 3, 2007 all claims of press freedom in Pakistan were meaningless. The meeting declared that any dialogue on the existing press laws with Federal Minister for Information Ms Sherry Rehman would only be possible and meaningful when all draconian laws are withdrawn.

It strongly condemned continued acts of violence against newspapers and pressmen and called on Federal and Provincial Governments as also all parties to honor their commitment to press freedom as contained in their election manifestoes and ensure press in Pakistan is not hindered in its reportage events and developments in keeping the right to know. Newspaper editors shall defend freedom with all resources and always stand up against all forms of threat and pressure so that nation remains fully informed and democratic norms are established and strengthened.

The meeting noted with grave concern repeated attacks on newspapers and newsmen in several incidents in the country including ones of November 3, 2007 and in wake of general elections.

The election results of 2008 general elections have been resounding vote for press freedom. Any effort by political parties or individuals to derail this mandate for press freedom will be resisted and defeated by the press in cooperation with all elements of society to uphold democratic norms and right to know of the people as also performance in unhindered manner of press in providing people with truth.

It decided suggestions of CPNE members be placed before regular meeting of Standing Committee for necessary action. These include holding of Pakistan-wide seminar in every important city including federal and provincial capitals on “Freedom from Threats and Violence Day of Press in Pakistan”. Standing Committee of CPNE be requested to adopt comprehensive line of action to meet new challenges in merging political scenario and all threats and pressure are countered effectively.

It extended happiness over recovery by CPNE President Arif Nizamani and successful heart surgery he underwent. It condoled sad demise of Sajjad Ali Chandio, son of Ghulam Nabi Chandio, member CPNE Standing Committee and senior journalist, Chief Editor of Daily Economic Times Islamabad Khalil Malik.

The meeting was attended by Arif Nizamani, president CPNE (Nawa-e-Waqt), Dr. Jabbar Khattak Sr. Vice President (Daily Awami Awaz), Mr Aamer Mehmood (Monthly Kiran), Mr Wamiq Zuberi (Daily Business Recorder), Mushtaq Qureshi Naya Ufaq, Anwar Farooqi (Aghaz), Najmuddin Sheikh (Daily Deyanat), Tahir Najmi (Daily Express), Kazi Asad Abid (Daily Ibrat), Inqillab Matri (Daily Millat), Dr. Waqar Yousuf Azeemi (Monthly Roohani Digest), Naseer Hashmi (Daily Ummat), Ghulam Nabi Chandio (Daily Pak), Mehmood-ul-Aziz (Monthly Pictorial News Review), Saeed Khawar (Nawa-e-Waqt), Owais Aslam Ali (PPI News Agency), Mukhtar Aqil (Daily Jurrat), Ali Akhtar Rizvi (Daily Kainat), Abdul Khaliq (Online), Nasir Dad Baloch (Daily Sindh Sujag), Muhammad Rizwan (Daily Aman), Usman Arab Satti (Daily Watan).
Source: The Nation
Date:5/7/2008