Raid on Dawn offices All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) urges Chief Executive to take action -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Raid on Dawn offices All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) urges Chief Executive to take action

KARACHI- The All Pakistan Newspapers Society has called upon the Chief Executive, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, to take action against officials who are insensitive the need of a government to maintain a professional relationship with the print media to keep the ship of the state on an even keel.

In a Press statement the publishers body criticized both the Government of Sindh and the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) for disregarding provisions in the law authorising physical search of consumer premises.

The APNS said the reaction of the Dawn management to the visit by KESC and Electrical Inspector official, accompanied by the Army Monitoring Team, was a natural consequence of the modus operandi employed whereby a normal inspection took on the garb of a raid.

The APNS also questioned the different methodology adopted by the electricity utilities to cheek the theft of electricity in the country. “While WAPDA has been inspecting meters to ascertain tampering by consumers, the KESC teams are conducting room-to-room inspection without adhering to the law.”

“Section 29(2) of the Electricity Act authorises a search pursuant to the order of the District Magistrate. Even sub-section (3) requires giving 24-hour notice for inspection and only upon refusal of entry by a consumer the electricity can be cut off. The District Magistrate has to be convinced that a prima facie evidence exists requiring a physical inspection of the premises before issuance of the required authority. “These mandatory requirements were totally ignored in case of Dawn as well as other newspapers,” the APNS lamented.

The APNS has always taken a principled stand that no special laws are required for the print media. Newspapers are expected to always respect and observe all the laws.

The APNS demands an immediate end to all actions which could jeopardise the image of the country as civilised state and called for an unconditional apology from the relevant authorities,” says a Press release.
Source: The Nation
Date:9/30/2000