Rs1m fine imposed on Channel 24

False audio clip of PIA air crash

Islamabad

Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) in its 122nd meeting held on Friday suspended Channel-24 licence from 5.00 P.M to 12.00 midnight daily for a period of 7 days starting fromDec 27, 2016 to Jan 2, 2017 for airing a false and unverified audio clip of the PIA plane crash near Havelian/ Abbottabad on Dec 7, 2016.
Besides the licence suspension, a fine of Rs1 Million is also imposed on the TV channel. The decision has been announced for airing false, unverified audio clip by the channel on Dec 7, 2016 claiming that it was of the ill-fated PIA plane.
PEMRA had immediately issued a show cause notice to the channel directing its management to file reply by Dec 15, 2016. But the channel management in reply to show cause notice and personal hearing could not prove their claim.
The Authority thus took the decision keeping in view the gravity of the violation, its adverse mental and psychological impact on the family members of those on board the plane and the general public that was already going through an emotional trauma.
The Authority’s decision has also been conveyed to PAKSAT and instructions have been issued to PAKSAT to implement PEMRA decision in letter and spirit. Separate instructions have also been issued to the cable operators to follow the decision.
PEMRA authority meeting also discussed non-payment of the outstanding dues (Rs.1 million) by Punjab TV for last two years and decided to suspend its licence. The Authority’s 122nd meeting also decided to extend one more opportunity to the Rawalpindi City Traffic Police to deposit its licence fee for grant of non-commercial F.M Radio.
Chairman of the PEMRA Mr. Absar Alam presided over the meeting while those who attended included Secretary Interior Arif Ahmed Khan, Chairman FBR Nisar Muhammad Khan, Chairman PTA Syed Ismael Shah, Ms. Nargis Nasir PEMRA Member (Punjab), Ms. Shaheen Habibullah Member (KP) and others. The Authority also reviewed progress of the decisions taken during its 121 st meeting.—NNI

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