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NA body defers all govt bills till next meeting

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly Standing Committee on Information and Broadcasting on Monday deferred all the government bills, namely, The Motion Picture (Amendment) Bill, 2020, The Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2020, The Pakistan Associated Press of Pakistan Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2020, and a private member bill, The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulator Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (moved by Uzma Riaz, MNA) till its next meeting.

The committee meeting was held in Committee Room of the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA), Headquarters, under the chairmanship of Mian Javed Latif, MNA. The chairman committee apprised that 5th July is the “darkest day” for Pakistan. All Pakistanis are taxpayers but unluckily we are not safe in federal as well as in the provinces.

If the circumstances were not such then there would have been no need to raise these issues of registration of FIRs and attacks on senior media journalists on the agenda of the meeting, he added. He said that if the issues of journalists were not resolved till its next meeting then the Committee members will protest outside the Parliament House.

After a briefing given by Hafeezur Rehman Memon, brother of Aziz Memon, late senior journalist of KTN and the Additional Inspector General of Police, Government of Sindh, the Committee was of the view that brother of Aziz Memon and his family is not satisfied with the inquiry of Joint Investigation Team (JIT) of the Sindh Police.

The Committee directed the Government of Sindh to constitute a fresh JIT in the case of murder of Aziz Memon and include one member from each province and also include Hafeezur Rehman Memon, brother of Aziz Memon, as a member in the fresh JIT to resolve the issue and come up with a final/comprehensive report to the Committee.

The Committee directed the secretary Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to provide the operational cost required for relaunching the Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) station at Khairpur, Sindh and ensure compliance in the next meeting. The Senior Superintendent of Police, Islamabad, briefed the Committee regarding attacks on Absar Alam, former chairman, (PEMRA)/senior journalist and AsadToor, journalist.

After detailed deliberations, the Committee was not satisfied on the briefing given by the SSP, Islamabad and further directed the secretary, Ministry of Interior, Inspector General of Police, Islamabad and SSP, Islamabad to come up with complete details.

The Committee also decided that the Minister for Interior be invited in the next meeting on the above said issues. The Committee also showed its concern over the absence of Minister for Information and Broadcasting and the Inspector General of Police, Islamabad.

On the issue regarding registration of FIRs against Hamid Mir and Asma Sherazi, senior journalists, the Committee directed the chairman, National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) and the director general, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to ensure their presence in the next meeting, and also come up with all records/details (Geo fencing, DNA matching, and forensic report etc).

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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