Jang Group tells liars to back off | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Jang Group tells liars to back off

Pakistan Press Foundation

KARACHI: The Jang Group is again the target of unfounded, biased and malicious allegations. Whether there is a democratic government or a dictatorship in power, they have been antagonistic to the independent policies of the Jang and Geo Group. There are also private organisations in Pakistan which have targeted the biggest media group of the country.

In an attempt to force the Jang Group to change its independent policy, these vested interests have sometimes accused us of tax evasion, defaulting on bank loans and siphoning-off the newsprint quota for profit. Some have even branded the Group as an American, Indian and Jewish agent, while others have accused us of taking money from India and the United States so that we toe the line of these countries. However, all these charges remained merely allegations, which have already been challenged in the courts of law. We have paid the price of our independent media policy. In the past all Geo Television Network channels were pulled off the air because we refused to submit to the whims of a dictator. Government advertisements for our television and newspapers were stopped and a number of other tactics were also used to damage this institution. So far the Group has suffered accumulative losses of at least eight billion rupees.

In a detailed statement, the Jang-Geo spokesperson strongly denied all the allegations made against the Group and described them as baseless and malicious.

In the most recent attempt to damage the Group, certain private media houses were used to level allegations against Jang and Geo. A private channel recently has aired a string of talk shows against Jang-Geo in which wild allegations, mostlyold and discredited, were repeated.

The Hindustan Times story and alleged links with Indian intelligence

A Hindustan Times report, which alleged that an Indian citizen Dawood Ibrahim is establishing a project with the help of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) in the country, served as the basis of these shows. Among other allegations, this private channel in its programmes, also accused Jang and Geo of planting this story in the Hindustan Times in league with the Indian intelligence.

Those who levelled these and other allegations include a big player of the Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE), Aqeel Karim Dhedhi, former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) Muhammad Ali, an anchorperson of that private channel, who owns an airplane and a luxurious car. This anchorperson’s often unbecoming conduct remains a subject of debate among journalists. Apart from this cast of characters, a journalist, who was a former employee of the Jang Group and a self-proclaimed spokesperson of the Pakistani intelligence agencies — known for his “laal topi” – are the other two persons indulging in persistent nefarious propaganda against the Group.

The anchor of that private television channel – used for wicked propaganda against the Jang Group and Geo – has a notorious reputation. In the past, he conducted a controversial interview in which he spoke against the honourable Supreme Court judges in a derogatory fashion. This interview led to his sacking but he has returned with an agenda against Jang and Geo.

Serious and spurious allegations have been levelled against the Jang Group and its management on the basis of a fake email regarding the Hindustan Times story of Sept. 29. The Jang Group has been viciously accused of having close ties with Indian intelligence agencies. An impression was created that this email was sent by the Hindustan Times. This was subsequently found to be blatantly false.

Aqeel Karim Dhedhi, known for his involvement in a number of financial scandals, is among the people involved in the smear campaign against Jang and Geo. When the Supreme Court took notice of Dhedhi’s financial scandals, many government officials spoke up and gave details of his manipulation of the stock market.He was also implicated in the OGRA scandal. Since then, all newspapers, including publications of the Jang Group have been carrying reports of Dhedhi’s alleged involvement in insider-trading in the Sui Southern Gas Company and the Sui Northern Gas Company. Billions of rupees of public money were allegedly looted by Dhedhi and his cohorts. Dhedhi is a defaulter of 1.6 billion rupees of the PTA according to unimpeachable sources. On March 11th, 2013 the Islamabad High Court rejected Dhedhi’s appeal and placed his name on the exit control list. News reports against Dhedhi have also been carried by reputed foreign media outlets including the British newspaper The Independent, the Wall Street Journal and the world’s leading international news service, Reuters.

People are aware that the Jang Group is known for investigative journalism in which its performance is unmatched. That is why most stories which expose corruption and wrongdoings in Pakistan are first published in Jang and The News. As per our journalistic norms, we ensure that all versions of the story are covered.

The third person involved in making these allegations is a journalist, who had previously worked for Jang. After leaving Jang, he joined the same television channel, which is now in the forefront of the campaign to malign this Group. Recently, this journalist landed in another media group, which he has now left. The latest reports about him say that he may join or is about to join a third organization. It appears that an unidentified person sent this journalist a fake email, which then became the basis of that anchorperson’s programme. It needs to be mentioned that the programme was aired in undignified haste and was not part of the regular schedule. This points to a conspiracy.

The entire episode becomes more intriguing as that senior journalist posted the fake email on the social media without verification. He forwarded this fake email despite knowing that a major chunk of social media platforms remain notorious around the world for fake photographs and videos and devious, unsubstantiated reports. Anyone can misuse the social media by posting fake content there including emails. Every experienced journalist knows that such emails have no credibility, yet he posted it on the social media.

According to the Jang Group’s spokesperson, that private television channel, its anchorperson and this senior journalist committed the crime of defaming a reputed and respected media organization and its management.

When the Jang Group contacted Sanjoy Narayan – Editor-in-Chief of The Hindustan Times – on telephone and by email, he termed this email ridiculous and bogus He categorically denied that the Hindustan Times had conducted any so-called inquiry mentioned in this fake email, which was used for propaganda against the management of the Jang-Geo Group and Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui, a reputed businessman. It is also worth considering whether Hindustan Times accepted that its Sept. 29 story was false or it just issued a customary clarification. In the world of journalism, what meaning should be taken from this clarification? Why did the channel, which levelled these allegations, not do a follow-up story? This story is still available on the Hindustan Times website. After the clarification, why wasn’t it removed?

Aman Ki Asha

A few months ago, the same anchorperson and the person donning the “laal topi” twisted the Media Commission report and accused the Jang-Geo Group of taking money from India and a Norwegian NGO for Aman Ki Asha.

They also alleged that these allegations were made by PEMRA officials in front of the Media Commission. But when the issue was taken up by the Supreme Court, the PEMRA officials first verbally, and then in writing deposed under oath that they had not given any such statement before the Media Commission. The Supreme Court expressed its displeasure on this and directed PEMRA officials to submit a written apology and delete allegations against Jang-Geo from the Media Commission report. But that television channel, its anchorperson and the man with the “laal topi” never apologized and continued with their propaganda campaign. It is pertinent to mention that this anchorperson indulged in anti Jang-Geo propaganda in violation of court orders and inspite of the registration of two criminal cases against him. He has been served with arrest warrants because his programmes are in violation of the court orders.

Geo never aired any programme against Dhedhi or the former SECP Chairman Muhammad Ali and hardly carried any news about them. Dhedhi and Ali maintain that the court restrained the Jang Group from carrying any news about them. The anchorperson and the “laal topi” man say that the court prohibited any comments on Aman Ki Asha.

Our submission is that the court never stopped anyone from expressing the truth. However, it barred calling someone an American or Indian agent without evidence or wrongly charging anyone for illegally accepting money from a foreign country. It needs to be mentioned that our newspapers carry the largest number of anti-India and anti-US news reports and columns.We believe that our disputes with India, including Kashmir, water-sharing issues and the Siachen Glacier, should be settled through talks at any cost. We passionately love our country and never hesitate from offering sacrifices for its prosperity and security.

JS and HSBC Bank

Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui was not allowed to acquire the HSBC Bank because of a pending inquiry against on of its affiliate companies, Azgard 9 (which does not, in fact, own the JS Bank) at the SECP for many years. The Jang management asked the SECP to do justice while conducting the inquiry and also provide an opportunity to Azgard 9 to present its case. But the SECP delivered a verdict without hearing the accused, depriving the JS Bank of a chance to acquire the HSBC, which would have been beneficial for Pakistan’s economy.

In the meantime, the print media, including Jang Group of Newspapers, carried reports relating to the Supreme Court and NAB cases in which these two gentlemen – Dhedhi and Mohammad Ali – were involved. The two kept expressing their annoyance at these reports. This displeasure contributed to the adverse decision against Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui.He was not heard. Under the law an inquiry should have been conducted in which the JS Group should also have also been invited to state their case.

The Jang Group spokesperson said that these two at that time revealed that they were given orders from the top government functionaries that this work should not be done because JS Bank refused a loan to some senior members of the former ruling party. Dhedhi and former SECP chairman said that they were directed not to do this work until Anwar Majeed gave them a go ahead. There is not one, but several respected and reliable witnesses who can verify this. These witnesses will come forward when the time comes.

The Jang Group spokesperson said that obstructing legitimate work of people through such inquiries, which go on for years, remain part of the tactics of certain forces and influential people. This denies law-abiding citizens and their businesses of their legitimate rights. It also inflicts on them severe mental torture and results in massive financial losses for them.

The spokesperson said that the Jang Group Management only asked for justice for Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui. It is a normal practice in societies all over the world that when someone faces injustice, personal contacts are used to approach concerned officials/people to seek justice. Even if someone other than Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui had asked for assistance, the Jang Group management would have made a request – be it to a government official or a private organization – to kindly look into the issue.

According to the spokesperson, the Jang Group Management raised the issue of injustices being done to Mr. Jahangir Siddiqui with the officials of the previous government as well as the present one. The Management asked that a high-level committee should be set up to review the matter. It was obvious that Aqeel Kareem Dhedhi, being Jahangir Siddiqui’s competitor, was a hurdle in this. The spokesman said that it remains an open secret in the market that the former SECP Chairman, M. Ali, was a close aide of former KSE chairman Dhedhi. According to witnesses, Ali was made SECP Chairman on Dhedhi’s recommendation.

GEO Films

Another false allegation was made that 200 Indian movies were purchased by the Jang Group and 100 billion rupees transferred to India using “hundi”.The Group has also been accused of running Indian movies on fake censor certificates. The Jang Group spokesperson denied these allegations and said that all the movie purchases were done legally and the Censor Board had issued certificates only after their diligent review. The surprising thing is that the entire Pakistan’s cinema market is not even three percent of the said amount.

ZS Education and MKRF

The anchorperson tried to imply that that the foreign countries and governments give money to Jang Group and its CSR initiative – the MKR Foundation. He has given Lord Nazeer’s reference, alleging that the British government gave 20 million pounds to the MKRF to promote education, but not a single school had been built and the whole amount was diverted to Jang and Geo for advertisements.The anchorperson alleged that this is equivalent to money laundering! The money was not meant for building schools.

The anchorperson also lied about the question asked by Lord Nazeer and the answers given by the British minister in this regard. The British minister said in the House of Lords that 9.5 million pounds sterling were given to the MKRF last year whereas the anchorperson wrongly claimed that it received 20 million pounds sterling. Actually, this funding was approved to run a public awareness drive for the promotion of education. Several other Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) also received money from this amount and the MKRF remains one of them. Out of this amount, the MKRF had to spend 6.9 million pounds in three years. Advertisements promoting education were also run on the state-run Pakistan Television, state-run Radio Pakistan, the ISPR’s FM-96 and private channels KTN, APNA and Waseb as well as other newspapers. Part of this funding was also given to another Pakistani NGO, which ran its advertisement campaign on two other private television channels.

All the MKR Foundation expenses are audited by an internationally reputed company. The audit report is also sent to the donors. Such funding is given after thorough investigations and is being systematically monitored.

The US Department of Justice invited applications for funding worth three million dollars for judicial reforms. Like many other NGOs, the MKRF also prepared its proposal, but that private television channel and its anchorperson and the English and Urdu-language newspapers of another media group, without even reading it, alleged that the MKRF wants American funding to undermine the independence of the judiciary. We commit that anyone who actually reads the proposal will not reach the same conclusion. (Note: Getting such funding for public advocacy remains under the ambit of the Pakistani laws. Such international funds are available for developing and backward countries. The Pakistani government as well as NGOs gets such funding. In fact, for most NGOs it is impossible to carry on their operations without such funding.)

Is the Pakistani Army also part of a conspiracy against sovereignty of the country when it accepts military aid from the USA ($26 billion since 1948, $17 billion since 2002)? Is the Pakistan Government also part of a Zionist conspiracy because it accepts billions of dollars of donor funds for advocacy of development projects? Is the Government of Punjab part of an unpatriotic agenda for the implementation of education reform and development of schools in the province?

It must be clarified that the Jang and Geo Group never took any money for the sensitive campaigns on the Hudood Ordinance, the Lawyers Movement or Aman Ki Asha. Whenever any funds are taken, the Group has taken the government and sensitive institutions into confidence and has openly declared the source of the funding.

Jang/Geo group has not taken any funds from the US to work against Hudood Ordinance

The Jang/Geo group or any of its affiliated companies have not asked for or received funding for anything related to the Hudood Ordinance. GEO believes that Zia’s Hudood Ordinance, passed by a diktat, is not the same as Hadood-Allah.

The Group provided a platform for debate which allowed religious scholars from all schools of thought to discuss man made flaws which they agreed could be improved so that the law does not equate rape with adultery in the name of Islam.

Most experts concurred that the original Zia ordinance was not 100% reflective of the spirit of Islam.

PCB bidding for Sri Lanka, South Africa series was transparent

Jang/GEO group has been falsely accused of receiving special favours by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to acquire rights for the cricket series against Sri Lanka.

The whole process was conducted in an open and transparent manner and was witnessed by both bidders (GEO Super and Ten Sports) and a bid committee comprised of Ehsan Mani as Chairman legal department of PCB, a retired judge, member of BOG, COO, CFO and independent international auditors (Price Waterhouse and Coopers).

Ten Sports won the South Africa series rights through the bidding process and GEO Super won the Sri Lanka series rights due to higher bid amounts. Ten Sports is a 100 percent Indian-owned company and yet no one raised an eyebrow against them or wrote articles one after the other. Due to interim appointments, the Supreme Court has does not allow the PCB to enter into any long-term sale of rights that is why the bidding for the matches was for two series only.

Also the India Pakistan series had not yet been finalized therefore PCB did not want to sell their jewel without the crown and thus opted for short term rights. The insinuation that Jang Group is being tested to behave for six months with the government after which it will be rewarded five year rights is outright slander and insinuates that we would sell out our editorial policy. If Jang/GEO Group was to sell out why wouldn’t it sell out to the previous government which was alleged to have been the bigger deal makers? Why wouldn’t it sell out to a military dictator in his most desperate times? GEO and Jang Group make money by being as independent as possible while others may make money by being dependent of the powers that be, all powers, local or foreign.

Why Jang/Geo remain targets of attacks

The spokesperson said that people ask why the Jang-Geo remains a target of such attacks. The reason is that the Jang Group is a reputable, reliable and credible media house, which is recognized not just in Pakistan, but around the world. Not just the people of Pakistan, but government officials hold the news printed or transmitted by the group as truthful, credible and authentic. We believe in candid and bold journalism. Whether it is a civil or military government, we try to give real news and expert opinions. We believe in democracy and support the judiciary. Our television channels and newspapers are the most viewed and read in Pakistan and the group is recognized as the most credible media house.

Recently, a retired brigadier alleged in that particular channel, that the Jang Group has become so influential that they could determine government policies. “The fact is that we only consider ourselves as a media institution responsible for disseminating news and opinions”, the spokesman said.

The allegations made against Jang-Geo Group are foolish, ridiculous and laughable. We are looking into the possibility of the involvement of small groups and hidden powers in this conspiracy. It is also possible that those people and organizations, which are weak and need crutches (including some who are defaulters or those which are prepared to go to any extent for personal benefits) may have surrendered in front of these hidden powers.

Answering a question, the spokesperson said that hidden hands were deliberately targeting the Jang-Geo Group. This element was trying to damage the reputation of our group through false, unfounded and vicious allegations. “Our spokesperson was not invited to the programme, nor was our version taken while printing the news against us in the newspapers. Why were those leveling allegations against us not going to the Press Council, PEMRA, NAB, tax authorities and courts? Why have they not submitted applications against us there?” he asked.

The spokesman said that the Jang Group will not just take that particular TV channel, its anchorperson, the Urdu and English newspapers and all the other people involved in the smear campaign against it to the Pakistani courts, but also take legal against them in Britain and the United States. Answering a question, the spokesman said that had the allegations been true, the Jang-Geo Group would not have decided to take legal action in the British and US courts, where verdicts are given within months. “Very soon, the people will see what happens to those leveling fabricated and malicious allegations against us. We pray that may Almighty Allah show our critics the right path.”

Courts favour Jang Group

The anchorperson insinuated that the courts do not take action against the Jang Group. This is because we do not publish any news which is false or baseless. The problem is in the anchorperson’s distorted mindset.

Social media

People, driven by revenge and jealousy, are making cheap orchestrated personal attacks against Jang and Geo in the social media. False information is spread about marriages of senior journalists affiliated with the group and doctored pictures and videos are uploaded to defame them. Even Quranic verses and sayings of the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) are being misused to damage our credibility. Similarly efforts are being made to defame Pakistan and Islam. Even the lives of our people are being threatened. “We have decided to challenge this painful and grave situation and will try to get legislation framed for the introduction of Cyber Crime Act. We want to tell the hidden forces and their agents (whether they belong to the media or any other group) to please back off because all these allegations are nothing more than a pack of lies”, said the spokesperson.

Tax issue

It should be kept in mind that any individual or a group can have a principled dispute with the tax regulator. Such disputes are always resolved as per law. But in the past, several press conferences were organized against us, alleging that the Jang Group had not paid taxes to the tune of billions of rupees and defaulted against its loan payments. A few channels repeatedly showed some media persons and anchorpersons who alleged that the Jang Group has not paid billions of rupees in taxes. “This is baseless because the Jang Group pays more in taxes compared with the combined taxes paid by rest of the top three media groups. Only Rs. 130 million in sales tax are disputed. The case is being heard in a tribunal and the High Court. The spokesperson categorically denied allegations that Jang Group is a bank defaulter and if the allegations are true, then they Governor State Bank of Pakistan, the FBR or Finance Ministry should take action”, the spokesperson said.

During the era of former military ruler Pervez Musharraf, the entire Geo Television network was forcibly shut down for three months and all the government advertisements remained totally barred. “Despite all this financial victimization and the fact that local revenues slumped to zero, not a single employee was laid-off. The group suffered billions of rupees losses, which resulted in tax payment problems,” the spokesperson said.

“The tax problem of the Jang Group was created by the former government’s harsh measures against us. Moreover, the Group suffered huge losses under the previous government. We approached courts on the issue of banning of ads for our Group, but not a single hearing has been conducted to-date,” the spokesperson said.

Any dispute between two parties is settled through discussion, and the papers being shown on television by the anchorperson relate to an old dispute. Both the parties went to the court on the issue, and the matter was resolved. Since the matter involved the National Bank of Pakistan, the previous government instructed its administration not to extend any loans to us, and also withdraw any such facility the bank had previously provided. “Similarly, on the issues of income and sales taxes, the Finance Ministry exerted pressure on us and created trouble,” the spokesperson clarified.

GEO owes Rs. 3 billion to PEMRA

The accusation that Jang/Geo owes more than a billion rupees to PEMRA is also completely false and baseless. The PEMRA should immediately take action against the Group if there was any such issue. The anchorperson should approach the court and consult his lawyer. He should also know that the entire electronic media industry has some disagreements with PEMRA, and in this regard the Pakistan Broadcasters Association, which is the representative body of television and radio stations, has already approached the court, and the very channel that the anchorperson is using as a platform is also a party to the issue.

Lal Masjid

The spokesman further said “may Almighty Allah show the right path to that anchorperson, who made serious, but groundless allegations against the group regarding the Lal Masjid incident. These are nothing but a pack of white lies. The Musharraf government blamed us for the detailed coverage of the standoff. We tried our best for reconciliation as late as a few hours before the Lal Masjid was raided. Kamran Khan and Hamid Mir played an important role in the mediation efforts.”

Geo and Jang are Indian/Jewish agents working against Pakistan’s interest

On the one hand, the group is accused of being an Indian and Jewish agent, and at the same time the US blames us for publishing anti-US reports.

Reality exposed: critics’ eyes should open now! Jang Group faced allegations of pro-US, pro-Taliban; spokesman (The News International – June 12, 2011)

Any independent research shows that because of our policy of transparency and balanced coverage everyone including the United States, the Taliban, secular forces and extremists have complaints against us. The group gives space to all schools of thoughts in every faction of society.

The spokesperson said that by the grace of Almighty Allah that the position the Jang Group enjoys has no parallel around the globe. An international institution, which has an outstanding reputation, recently conducted a survey in the cross section of people in Pakistan, which among many questions also asked the people that from which source do they get their world news? A massive 72 percent of the respondents named Geo as their main source of information, while 22 percent said it was from state TV and only four percent said they got their information from other channels. Moreover, the Pakistani rating companies, international media, media buying houses and advertisement agencies, all of them confirm that Geo TV and Jang Group newspapers remain the most widely viewed and read in the country.

“We remain proud of our journalists and all the other team members. It is their hard work and dedication, which has taken us to these heights of success. Whether it is politics, social issues, or general news; whether we are dealing with problems faced by women or issues relating to the youth or any other matter — our team members are given full opportunity as per our policy to sharpen their abilities and participate in the decision-making at various levels. This is the reason that each of our programmes is widely viewed. Actually, our competitors are jealous because they have failed to outperform us. Although there are 80 channels in Pakistan, by the grace of Almighty Allah none has managed to come near us in popularity even in 10 years,” the spokesperson said.

Some media organisations have other business interests. The former rulers were partner of ARY. Their names were linked in the infamous ARY Gold Case. Efforts were made to suppress this case and get a favourable judgment from court. This game was played directed by the Law Ministry, and the NAB friendly prosecutors and accountability courts.A committee, constituted by the Hounourable Court, has submitted a report which is now being considered by the Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court. In this connection, MCB’s owner Mian Mansha is unfairly criticized without any proof. Similarly, some family members of ARY Group’s owners were doing businesses in Dubai. They defaulted on business transactions and now their entry remains banned in Dubai. Their London-based company was declared bankrupt and the store owned by them hardly did business for two years and had to be closed.

Their sales tax payments worth of tens of millions of rupees were to be made during the tenure of the previous government, but they managed to get concessions. “Even now the sales tax department claims that ARY has to pay sales tax worth tens of millions of rupees, and it is ironic that even then they are leveling allegationsof us being sales tax defaulters.”

In the same way, the Express Group owners did personal business deals worth billions of rupees with important figures of the Pakistan People’s Party. Huge loans were acquired against minimal collateral and not paid back for years. Soon after Musharraf’s takeover, owners of the Express/Lakson Group were arrested, but somehow they managed to get themselves freed and fled the country. Later, they had to return to the country only after NAB contacted Interpol. They entered into a plea bargain with NAB after admitting their crimes. They gave assurances to repay all installments worth billions of rupees, but even after the passage of nine years the amount has still not been paid. The spokesman said, “It should be noted that when the loan was acquired, itwas not repaid for years and later they did not pay even the promised installments. This shows that they committed illegalities and used that money (loans) to expand their business ventures.”

The spokesman further said that the Express Group owners bought a luxury boat and a bungalow, where special guests and government officials were invited and entertained with wine and women. He pointed out that renowned journalist, Kamran Khan, had disclosed in one of his news stories that two men – who worked as managers of Sultan Lakhani – lodged an FIR at a police station against their boss, but no action was taken against him as by that time he had been elected a a senator. These two men remained missing for years and still nothing is known about their whereabouts. Some people say Lakson Group owners launched their own newspaper and established a media group to compete against the Jang Group purely out of revenge and jealousy. During the previous PPP-led government, this group managed to get a major portion of government advertisements of Jang Group’s share for four-and-a-half years. The Jang Group spokesperson said that such people – involved in the above mentioned wrongdoings – often enter into compromises with rulers or other hidden forces and vested interests instead of pointing out their misdeeds and illegal acts. Due to their compromises, other media groups are also compelled to strike similar deals instead of presenting the truth.

The spokesperson said that the Jang Group is the only media institution which tries its best to follow principled journalistic norms and values. When an omission is committed inadvertently, apologies are offered without delay, but principled stances are steadfastly defended. No journalist or anchorperson has ever been directed or advised to give baseless stories or comments against anybody or in favour. This is our stated policy.

The spokesperson said, “The Jang Group has vast experience in the field of journalism and on its basis we can say with surety that anchorperson, who stooped so low will be punished for his deeds. “We will make sure that the case which we are filing in court will help bring to justice the masterminds of this defamation campaign against us”.

Had the Sept. 29 story of Hindustan Times been sponsored by us, we would have placed it on Pakistani social media. But this was never done, which is a proof that this episode is baseless. We do not believe insuch negative tactics.

The spokesperson said that the particular TV channel and its anchorperson alleged that the Aman Ki Asha remains a business venture and is aimed at earning money. “But they should themselves realize that one of their own channels – QTV – is aired in India, which earns a lot of money. It is pertinent to mention that when no Pakistani TV channel is allowed to be aired in India, then how come that particular group manages to run its transmissions there. The particular TV channel and its anchorperson also tried to label us traitors by terming a genuine investigative story on Ajmal Kasab as propaganda. We stand by our story and believe that the truth, no matter how bitter, is more patriotic than a lie, no matter how sweet.”

The spokesperson further pointed out that a large number majority of Express/Lakson Group’s business partnerships are with American and Indian companies. Similarly they have an agreement with an American media outlet, whereby they provide a foreign newspaper (which is owned by Jews), alongwith their local daily newspaper. “We would like to clarify here that we are not against any such business partnerships but are mentioning this only to underline the double standards prevalent. How can they accuse the Jang Group of being pro-American or pro-Indian? Can’t that particular channel, its anchorperson and the hidden hands see these facts? How come there is no mention of all this on the social media?”

The spokesman further said they have apprised the country’s government and military leadership that these particular hidden hands are pressurizing people in the Jang Group’s administration for meetings to extract information, while journalists associated with our group are being asked to quit their jobs and join any other media outlets.

We were hopeful that the Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan should have heard this case suo-moto. “Now we are approaching the apex court ourselves where we will be compelled to reveal how the national interests are being violated and compromised. We will inform the court what these hidden forces are doing in Karachi and the rest of Pakistan. We are reviewing whether to reveal these conspiracies with evidence in a press conference or disclose them before the Supreme Court.”

The spokesman said that in Pakistan generally, allegations are made regarding how private institutions seek government blessing for their own benefit. We are thankful to Almighty Allah that no such charge has ever been made against the Jang/Geo Group. “We are also astonished that such programmes focusing on old issues against the Jang Group and Aman Ki Asha are being aired now. What is the reason that such propaganda is being carried out after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came to power? It is being said that this nefarious conspiracy is aimed to sabotaging Prime Minister Sharif’s efforts at improving and expanding relations with India.”

The News