New regulatory body to oversee electronic, print and cyber media

August 29, 2018

Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said on Wednesday that the print and electronic media regulatory authorities will be abolished and a new authority will be formed that will oversee all types of media.

He said the Pemra law will be reviewed, as will the functions of the Press Council of Pakistan. Pemra handles electronic media while the press council handles print media. Chaudhry said that they will consult with media persons and establish a single media regulatory authority that will also be responsible for ‘cyber media’ and social media.

This will allow the same laws and regulations to be applied to all media outlets and will save resources, he explained. The information minister promised that professionals and media persons would be consulted when the authority was being formed.

He said that changes will be seen in PTV very soon. We ended censorship in PTV and are giving more time to the opposition than private TV channels are, he said, adding that the opposition should show enough ‘grace’ to thank them.

He also discussed MMA chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s bid for the presidency and said that Rehman believes this parliament is bogus and the votes through which its members were elected are fake but he wants to be president by getting votes from members of parliament. “It’s a fake parliament but it’s halal for the presidential election,” said Chaudhry.

The minister also discussed the Senate meeting at which PML-N members walked out. We asked them how much they spent on advertisements, he said, adding that they have formed a review committee to investigate the money spent on advertisements during the PML-N’s tenure.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has banned the use of government funds for advertisements with political leaders’ faces on them, he added.