Supreme Court issues notices to 58 TV channel owners
ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court Monday issued notices to 58 TV channel owners while hearing petitions filed by journalists against distribution of money and plots by business tycoon Riaz Malik.
A two-member bench, consisting of Justice Jawad S Khawaja and Justice Arif Hussain, heard the petitions, and filed by journalists Hamid Mir, Absar Alim and other journalists. Counsel for Bahria Town Zahid Bokhari told the court that Malik Riaz had never given any plot or money to any journalists and such insinuations are a pack of lies. No amount, through Bahria Town pad or check, was ever distributed.
On this, Hamid Mir argued that if this is not true, than the court should seek PTA record and see who displayed the list of journalists on the Internet.Justice Jawad S Khawaja remarked that several important questions have been raised in the petitions, and it is imperative that they be argued in the court.
Zahid Bokhari further told the court that Hamid Mir filed the petition due to his opposition to a rival TV channel. This is a fight of an individual which is being fought through channels.
Hamid Mir said that he is a professional journalist and bears no animosity towards anyone. If he had filed the petition due to any differences with another TV channel than its anchorperson Arshad Sharif would not have been party to the petitions. He said that besides him, Asma Sherazi and Mazhar Abbas are also co-respondents, and they are all professional journalists, and we have no link with media house owners.
He said that we are under constant pressure from TV channel owners as well as other elements. Hamid Mir further said that no office of any TV channels is present in Quetta. Therefore, they don’t know what is happening there. It would be better if they are summoned to Quetta and hearing is conducted in Quetta so that they would see what is happening in Quetta.
On this, the court ordered the government to take measures for security. The court adjourned then hearing till September 6 and asked for detail response from the 58 TV channel owners. Counsel for another private TV channel requested for more time for his client to file a response in the court.