Government has no intention to curb press
PESHAWAR- The government has no intention to curb press freedom which has been enhanced during the military regime, Secretary Information and Media Development Anwar Mehmud said.
The secretary said the opening of TV News Channel substantiates this claim. He said lively and open debate is held on issues of public interest daily for two hours in the morning. Electronic media is gradually being freed from the government clutches, he claimed. He said the present government is pursuing the same information policy outlined by the Chief Executive General Pervez Musharraf in his first address to the nation and it will continue with the same till the time it was in the office.
He said policies were not altered or changed with the removal of individuals. About the government’s policy towards the secretary said, the government intends to allow private sector to run electronic channels and expressed the hope that within next few month, there will be electronic media in private sector.
About the apprehensions expressed by the owners of the regional papers, secretary information said, Rs 170 million have been released during last three months to clear arrears of the newspapers regarding advertisements and the credit for it goes to the present government.
He denied the impression of 50 per cent cut on total volume of the advertisements. Overall advertisement budget has increased, he said. Of the total advertisement, 25 per cent has been allocated for regional papers. He also announced that a committee consisting of both federal and provincial information department officials and representatives of the working journalists would be formed to sort out contentious issues like the issuance of advertisements, ABC and other matters.
Source: The News