Newly appointed Chairman Press Council of Pakistan calls on Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting

Islamabad: Raja Muhammad Shafqat Khan, newly appointed Chairman of the Press Council of Pakistan called on Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Firdous Ashiq Awan here today to discuss administrative and other issues related to the functioning of the Council.

The Minister, while talking to the Chairman said that it is an achievement of the democratic government that the Press Council is now complete and has become a functional body. She said that the democratic government inspired by the vision of the President and the Prime Minister who has made the Press Council effective and operational in the light of the Ordinance issued in 2002. She added that Pakistan is now at-par with the neighbouring and other developed countries in ensuring freedom of press.

The Minister emphasized that the government believes in freedom to express thoughts without any fear and favour. She expressed the hope that the media in Pakistan will continue to play its vital role in informing, educating and entertaining the masses. The Minister added that the Press Council will play a role of bridge between common masses and media institutions.

The Minister assured the Chairman that the freedom of media is the corner stone of the policies of the present democratic government and strengthening of vital institutions is the top most priority of the government.

She declared that with the establishment and functioning of the Press Council of Pakistan, the government has safeguarded the fundamental rights of speech and freedom of expression as enshrined in the constitution of Pakistan 1973.

The Chairman Press Council informed the Minister that the Council will be an important forum for the redressal of the grievances of the people as well as of the media. He said that Council will be a non-partisan, independent and autonomous body, which will be compatible with the regional and global institutions. He said that the Council will establish and follow the higher standard of professionalism in enforcing and implementing ethical code of practice.

He said that under the law, Government has to provide necessary facilities and grant-in-aid for the establishment of the Head Office as well as four sub-offices in the professional capitals.

The Minister assured the Chairman that Government will provide all necessary facilities for the smooth functioning of the Council.

It may be mentioned here that the Press Council of Pakistan consists of 19 members including the Chairman. With the nomination of the Chairman the Council now stands completed and another pledge of the democratic government has been fulfilled to strengthen the institutions in the country.

For more information, contact:
Haji Ahmed Malik
Principal Information Officer
Press Information Department (PID)
Tel: +9251 925 2323 and +9251 925 2324
Fax: +9251 925 2325 and +9251 925 2326