IHC seeks PBA report over TV channels regulatory mechanism

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Things to be put on right course before Ramazan

Staff Report

Islamabad

Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday sought a report from Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) on practice of ethical codes and role of in-house editorial committee examining the content before it goes on air. The court gave these orders during the hearing of a petition filed by Waqas Malik Advocate against airing of obscenity in television programmes passed this direction.
Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui while hearing the case expressed his determination to set the things right before arrival of Ramazan-ul-Mubarak. During that holy month too, the private TV channels indulge in unethical practice for the sake of rating, he said. He directed both PBA Chairman Mian Amir Mehmood to submit the report within two weeks. During the hearing, Pemra chief Absar Alam informed the IHC that the regulator had imposed Rs70 million fine in 119 cases besides issuing 166 show cause notices to private television channels for violating code of conduct during last 15 months.
The electronic watchdog had taken 380 different actions against private television channels for airing unethical and inadequate programmes, this was further told. The report also revealed that the authority took action against the private television channels and the actions ranged from issuance of show cause notices, advice, warnings, directives, banning the anchorpersons, suspension of channels and imposition of fine.
The Pemra report says that the authority imposed fine in 199 cases on over 50 channels and issued show cause in 166 cases since December 2015 till date. During that period, the authority suspended 6 television channels including Channel 24, Neo TV, Din TV (thrice), Silver Screen and Urdu-1.

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