Wednesday Sep 15, 2021
ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry has said the government's proposals on the Pakistan Media Development Authority will be amended if they are not accepted.
The minister — while speaking at a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Information and Broadcasting headed by Senator Faisal Javed — said that whatever has been laid out so far are just proposals.
“If these proposals are accepted, well and good, otherwise we will amend them,” said Chaudhry.
Chaudhry said that they have followed a foreign framework in formulating the proposed law and asked all parties to give their opinion.
He said that they have suggested an eight-member commission comprising individuals from the media and government.
“We will never form the PMDA if our proposals are not accepted,” said Chaudhry.
The media and journalists' associations have rejected the proposed PMDA, terming it contrary to freedom of journalism and freedom of expression.
They say that the purpose behind forming the PMDA is to bring all the media departments under the state’s control.
During a meeting of the National Assembly's sub-committee on information and broadcasting earlier today, media bodies cast aspersions on the proposed PMDA.
A Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) representative told the meeting that it was hard not to doubt the government's intentions when it came to the new media regulatory authority, as Chaudhry had claimed channels would work towards destabilising the country.
They suggested updating the existing regulatory framework and laws instead of bringing all media regulatory authorities under one umbrella.