Free media major achievement of govt -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Free media major achievement of govt

ISLAMABAD – Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Senator Anisa Zeb Tahirkheli has said that a free media is a major achievement of the government, as it would strengthen democracy in the country.

She said that a free media could help in projecting and improving Pakistan’s image in the world and helps in raising the general level of education and awareness among the people.

She said that was the reason the media sector in Pakistan has been given all incentives. She expressed these views in a briefing on Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) held at its headquarters here on Friday.

Pemra Executive Member Noor Saghir Khan briefed the minister about the structure, composition, working, authorities, procedures and modalities of the authority.

The minister said that Pakistan has allowed cross-media ownership, but steps have been incorporated to discourage media monopolisation. The minister said that the government is encouraging more and more entrants to the media sector as it wants to liberalise broadcast sector, create investment and job opportunities, facilitate competition and introduce new state-of-the-art technologies in the sector.

She also appreciated the advent of new technologies in the sector like MMDS and DTH system for better service to the viewers.

She said that the role of Pemra has become very important in the present circumstances when the world is rapidly turning into a global village and the information revolution is engulfing us from all sides.

Anisa said that we have to remember social, cultural, religious and moral norms and values in all aspects of our lives. She added that steps are being taken to have a strict check to restrict availability of objectionable material through cable and satellite, etc.

The minister said that laws were already there in the system and there is an urgent need to implement and enforce these laws.

She added that nobody is above the law and any violator of the law will be dealt with strictly. She also said that steps are being taken by the ministry to enforce the existing laws regarding cable service operators to ensure that sanctity of the holy month of Ramazan is observed by restricting objectionable material on electronic media.

She also said that the aim of establishing the “Council of Complaints” is to address the objections and complaints of the people regarding electronic media in the country.

Source: Business Recorder

Date:10/16/2004