Government efforts to sbjugate media condemned

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Sindh president Zubair khan has said that Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz’s claims for a free media is in contrast to the applied practices by the government whereof the print and electronic media have suffered tremendous sanctions for exposing the dark sides. Several high ranking dailies and a number of private television channels have been inflicted for repulsing despotic advices. As and when statements issued by high officials for the freedom of expression are meant to be a new threat telling the press that the threads are in governments hands that could be relaxed or pulled up according to how much the media bows down.

Should PM be serious for the ultimate freedom of both the print and electronic media, he must put an end to control over state-generated advertisements first and should be awarded on merit without prejudices. The independent and autonomous press and media council should be assigned to deal with print and electronic media. The press and media council should be allowed to form its administrative and management bodies through ballot or as the majority deems appropriate. The government must nullify fake cases that have been registered against journalists at once with a surety not to repeat the victimizating practices in future, he added.

PM must assure first freedom of the state-owned television to prove his claims and his chief. The government should lift ban so that leaders from opposition side may also appear on the screen. If these rational measures are taken once then Prime Minister or his chief will stay free from taking pain telling the nation that the press is free. He must not forget that freedom whether for an expression, for press or for a nation is not a thing that could be awarded as gift or charity but it is gained through continuous struggle. It is indeed Pakistani press and electronic media that have struggled for a good sixty years to maintain its freedom. Pakistani press has that chutzpah not to ever seek any freedom as award from totalitarians so no one has any justification championing him to making the press free, he added.

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