Information Ministry Asked to Conduct Workshop

Islamabad, August 19 (Online Int’l): The Senate Standing Committee on Information and Broadcasting in its meeting on Wednesday directed the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to conduct a workshop for parliamentary reporters regarding the best practices to follow parliamentary proceedings and adherence to the restriction of the expunged words from publication or airing.

This was in reference to the discussion on a point of public importance raised by Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak regarding publication of words in a newspaper that were expunged from the proceedings. The Committee also directed PTV to conduct a study into international best practices regarding the provision of a few seconds delay in transmission of House proceedings to avoid airing of such content.

The newspaper that published the news was asked to take the matter up in the editorial committee and ensure publication of regret over the story that contained the expunged words.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Faisal Javed Khan here at the Parliament House on Wednesday and was attended among others by Senators Nauman Wazir Khattak, Rubina Khalid, Sajjad Turi, Behramand Tangi, Syed Sabir Shah, MaulanaAtta ur Rehman, Pervaiz Rasheed, Kamran Micheal, Minister for Information andBroadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz, Secretary Information and Broadcasting,Principal Information Officer, Managing Director PTV and officers from PEMRA.

The Committee also discussed the questions of Senator Behramand Tangi regarding the educational qualification, experience, salaries and benefits of Chairman and MDPTV as well as details of all people recruited in PTV in the last one year. The Committee was of the view that high salaries and perks of professionals recruited can be justified only if the output of the State Television speaks of any improvement in terms of its ratings, revenue or production quality.

The Committee directed PTV to provide details of the complete procedures followed for recruitment and also decided to take comprehensive, all-encompassing briefing from PTV regarding its structure, issues and future plans.

The Committee also directed the PTV administration to pay a proper glowing tribute to Rauf Khalid on his work for PTV as well as for the wonderful productions for the Kashmir cause. Details were also sought on the matter of pending payments to media houses and delay in disbursing salaries to journalists. The Committee was told that out of a total of 1.15 billion that were due to the media houses, 916 million have been paid and around 200 million remain.

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