Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has directed GEO News to cancel the airing of an interview of Ehsanullah Ehsan. As a spokesperson for terrorist outfit Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Ehsanullah Ehsan was interviewed by GEO News anchor Saleem Safi on the network’s program “Jirga”.
Ehsan is involved in multiple terrorist attacks on the country, which have claimed dozens of lives and played a major role in the unstable security situation of the country.
PEMRA Prohibits Airing of Terrorists Interview pic.twitter.com/egF3NPvvOi
— Report PEMRA (@reportpemra) April 27, 2017
PEMRA stated that the interview, and its airing, is a clear breach of the National Action Plan and Section 3(3) of Electronic Media Code of Conduct, 2015. Ever since the interview was completed, PEMRA has received a number of complaints and notices through different means by many citizens across Pakistan, who do not want a member of a terrorist organization, responsible for taking numerous lives, to be seen on national television.
PEMRA’s Rules and Code of Conduct (CoC) 2015 clearly prohibits “glorification of terrorists” and no related content, except the confessional statements of the terrorists and involved organizations, is cleared for broadcasting. In this case, the confessional statement has already been aired by security agencies, also restricted to publish only certain parts of the statement.
Broadcasters and media houses must take full responsibility in case of such incidents and ensure that all broadcasting rules, regulations, and protocols are strictly observed.