Islamabad – Supreme Court of Pakistan judge Justice Qazi Faez Isa on Thursday assailed the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) for changing the placement of private news channels, including DawnNewsTV and Geo News.
“TV channels that are not following a certain agenda will face restrictions?” he asked the Pemra director general. “Do you only want to watch channels that you like?”
Justice Isa had inquired if the news of restrictions being placed on TV channels was true. He was told by the Pemra representative that the body had changed the placement of a few news channels, moving them down the list.
The bench ordered Pemra to submit a detailed response regarding restrictions placed on news channels. It also inquired as to why its previous orders regarding ensuring the people’s right to information had not been implemented.
Pakistan has long been a dangerous country for journalists who report on issues like extremism, militancy, religious fundamentalism, or military interference in politics. A country with a history of military coups has recently witnessed an unprecedented period of civilian rule. But journalists say 10 years of democracy has not strengthened freedom of the press.