Pakistan Television's (PTV) code of ethics to be applied on cable TV: Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Pakistan Television’s (PTV) code of ethics to be applied on cable TV: Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA)

PESHAWAR- The existing code of ethics prevailed in PTV would strictly be applied on the licence holders of cable TV operators in the country to keep a cheek on the operators violating code of ethics.

This was stated by the Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Anthority (PTA) Mian Muhammad Javed while briefing newsmen after the first meeting of the Regional Monitoring Committee for NWFP.

The meeting was chaired by Chairman Regional Cable TV Monitoring Committee former Chief Justice of Peshawar High Court Justice Abdul Karim Khan Kundi. The members of the regional committee are Arbah Muhanimad Safdar, Dr Muhammad Nawaz, Mrs. Mumtaz lqbal Jaafri and Sharif Farooq.

Chairman PTA Mian Muhammad Javed said, the regional monitoring committee would entertain applications against cable TV operators for violating code of ethics. The government, he said, brought free for all transmission, under prescribed rules and regulations. He told that under an agreement, the cable TV operators have been made bound to honour the code of ethics as its violation would make them liable to fine besides other punishment under the PTA act.

“Through licence, they have been made to abide by the prescribed rules and regulation while transmitting their programmes”, he elaborated. An office of the Regional Monitoring Committee has been setup in Peshawar. He said, the committee would meet once a month for the coming three months. The committee would take proper action against the operator found guilty of the offence.

The guilty would be punished under Telephonic Act 1996 which included fine, punishment and cancelation of the licence as well. He called upon the people to support the government in its efforts in order to put this new industry in accordance with our social, religious, cultural obligations.

Similarly, he said, Citizens Committees have been established in Lahore, Karachi and Rawalpindi to monitor the transmission of cable TV. “This is a novel way adopted by the government to ensure peoples’ participation in the exercise”, he maintained.

About the criteria adopted for the award of a licence to cable TV operator, Mian Muhammad Javed said, five things were taken into consideration before granting licence. It included financial condition of the party, technical know how, feasibility etc.

To a question, he said, PTA has started a survey to track down illegal cable TV operators. He said, illegal operators have been warned to get themselves registered by September 15 next or face action.

When his attention was drawn towards growing complaints that some operators, who have deposited their fee for registration, were not being issued licence, the PTA Chairman declared that legal backing was available to them and they could register their complaints with the provincial administration.

Describing cable TV as the most powerful impressionable media, the Chairman PTA said, multi-dimensional objectives like promotion of education, healthy entertainment, consensus on national issues ete could be achieved through its use. That is why the present government keeping in view these facts, decided to regulate the business of cable TV in the country. The business of cable TV initiated in the country when people started selling Dish programmes to the customers illegally.

The major complaints against cable TV are increasing obscenity, sectarian hatred, religious tension and degrading women and children, he said and added, “we have certain rules and regulations in our country to offset these impacts”.

PTA, Mian Muhammad Javed said, invited applications for licensing and added that so far 1151 applications have been received, from all over the country including 185 from Islamabad (exclusive 17 from Peshawar), 496 front Labore and 470 from Karachi. So far 622 licence have been awarded, he, added.

The central monitoring committee for cable TV is functioning in Islamabad under the chairmanship of Mian Muhammad Javed with its members Major General Khalid Bashir, Ch. Muhammad Din, Muhanunad Nisar, Muhammad lqbal and Muhanimad Salim.

Source: The Nation
Date:9/2/2000