Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Pakistan’s ARY News taken off air for broadcasting Imran Khan’s speech

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The suspension came hours after Pakistan’s media regulator, on Sunday night, banned broadcasts of the ousted prime minister’s speeches.

New Delhi,UPDATED: Mar 6, 2023 17:50 IST

ARY News Generic

ARY News is considered to be sympathetic towards Imran Khan (Representational/Twitter)

By India Today World Desk: Pakistan’s private news channel ARY TV has been taken off air today for broadcasting former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s address on Sunday. This came hours after Pakistan’s media regulator, on Sunday night, banned broadcasts of the ousted prime minister’s speeches.

Against was taken against the broadcaster in the past as well.

Last night, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) banned satellite television channels from broadcasting live and recorded speeches of the 70-year-old politician after the Islamabad Police failed to arrest him.

ARY, considered sympathetic towards Khan, is not currently available – a message of the ban flashes on the screen.

Also Read | Pakistan media regulator bans Imran Khan’s speeches. How he evaded arrest in Toshakhana case

“It has been observed that Mr Imran Khan, Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, in his speeches/statements is continuously… levelling baseless allegations and spreading hate speech through his provocative statements against state institutions and officers which is prejudicial to the maintenance of law and order and is likely to disturb public peace and tranquillity,” the PEMRA order read.

It said that the airing of hateful, slanderous and unwarranted statements against state institutions is “in sheer violation of Article 19 of the Constitution and a judgment of the Supreme Court”, reported news agency PTI.

“Therefore, the competent authority i.e. Chairman PEMRA…hereby prohibits broadcast/rebroadcast of speech(s)/press talks (recorded or live) of Mr Imran Khan on all satellite TV channels with immediate effect.”

The regulator directed all satellite TV channels to ensure the constitution of impartial editorial boards under Clause 17 of the Electronic Media (Programmes and Advertisement) Code of Conduct 2015 to ensure the platforms are not used to air contemptuous remarks against state institutions.

Also Read | ‘When top leaders are criminals…’: Imran Khan amid arrest warrant in gifts case

In case of non-compliance, the licenses of TV channels would be suspended, PEMRA warned.

It is not the first time that PEMRA has taken action against Khan. It had earlier prohibited the broadcast and re-broadcast of speeches and press conferences of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief last November as well. However, the federal government revoked the ban the same day.

Yesterday, the Islamabad Police went to Lahore to arrest Imran Khan with a non-bailable arrest warrant after Khan missed several court appearances.

But the former PM was not home. He later appeared and delivered a scathing speech from outside his home. This speech was aired by the news channel, leading to the suspension.

Also Read | Protests outside Imran Khan’s Lahore home against his arrest in Toshakhana case: 5 points

Quearn – Do QnA

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