APNS urges parties to respect press -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

APNS urges parties to respect press

KARACHI, Jan 3: Hameed Haroon, President of All Pakistan Newspapers Society, on Saturday appealed to Sindh National Front president Mumtaz Ali Bhutto and the heads of other political parties to “respect the press, allow it to grow, correct its mistake and show some tolerance”.

Talking to media, he said the APNS had received a complaint from one of its members, Dr Jabbar Khattak, who is head of daily Awami Awaz, about an alleged armed attack on the newspaper’s office two days ago in Karachi.

He said as per complaint, while Dr Jabbar was away from office on Thursday evening, a 30-member delegation of SNF entered the office forcibly.

He said the SNF “delegation” consisted of men armed with automatic weapons. They forced their way into the office and hurled threats at the managing editor.

The most prominent member of the delegation was the media coordinator of SNF, who has a well recognised face, he noted.

“The SNF is a party of Sindh, we do not look at electoral results, we know every party is important and as a press we must carry every viewpoint.”

Unfortunately, the APNS chief regretted, SNF has got it into its head that it had a right to front-page placement of its statements.

“This is not something new we have seen. We have seen the press attacked repeatedly by different parties. SNF is not the first nor will it be the last,” Mr Hameed said.

“I appeal to people as citizens of Pakistan we need to exercise a discipline in this matter and appeal to all political parties, including SNF, and Mumtaz Bhutto himself, to set the record straight with respect to the rights and privileges of the press in any democracy,” he said.

Source: Dawn

Date:1/4/2009