Press Council of Pakistan
The Press Council of Pakistan (PCP) during its first sitting expressed its dedication to work for the freedom of press as well as making certain Ethical Code of Practice as encoded in the Press Council of Pakistan Ordinance 2002.
These are clearly no simple aims that the council has fixed for itself. Obviously, it gives the impression that the establishment of the body is a step that will serve the media industry in long term affects.
Conversely, it seems too good to be accurate. The concept of a government organ ascertaining press liberty is as much illusory as it is at odds. Generally, governments across the globe are antagonistic to a blunt and fearless media and ours is no different.
Any such media supervisory body can, on the opposite, run the menace of being used as a means of threats. More shocking is the reality that it was mainly the Pervez Musharraf’s regime that was keen to set up this body.
Indeed, it wanted an organizational sanction to quiet the press particularly at a time when it backed the lawyer’s movement for an independent judiciary and reinstatement of the deposed judges.
In the meantime, Chairman of the PCP Raja Shafqat Abbasi expressed that the establishment of the body is nothing less than of a landmark.
He on behalf of the other members promised to work thoroughly to run the council’s affairs. Such committals seem to have been made in a good belief and they should be greeted by all walks of life.
Meanwhile, the council is likely to work merely for the function for which it has been formed. It must shield against any political government’s tries to influence it to restrain the true voices.
There are many articles in the Ordinance’s Ethical Code of Practice principally those relevant to defame and insulting material that is open to mistreatment by the government and other attackers.
One will have to make the amendments in rank if wants independence of the press.
It bears commenting that press has gained its fame and credibility in the general public by courageously and daringly covering issues which previously were not done.
Reservations about the expertise of journalists and media institutions must be tackled without any doubt. However, it should report neutrally without conflicting upon the institutions’ unchallengeable rights.
It is anticipated the Press Council of Pakistan (PCP) will be proved a stepping stone in this notion.