LANDI KOTAL: Journalists belonging to Khyber Agency on Saturday demanded extension of the Right to Information (RTI) Act to tribal areas so as to enable local mediapersons to have easy access to information.

The demand came during a consultative dialogue organised by Internews at Jamrud Press Club. The dialogue was attended by mediapersons and representatives of local political administration and agriculture and health departments.

The participants said that most of the time their stories were not carried by their respective organisations as these were not balanced due to absence of official version on a particular issue.

They said that in most of the cases they relied on personal contacts with the government officials as they were otherwise denied access to information in the absence of a law.

They said that with easy access to information the problems confronted by the residents could be highlighted for their resolution. They said that as most of the displaced families had now returned to their hometowns it was time that the government departments shared plans for the rehabilitation of these families alongside reconstruction activities.

The tribal journalists urged the federal government to include the extension of RTI law to Fata along with approval of the reforms plan for tribal areas.

ARMS SEIZED: Customs officials at Torkham have seized arms and ammunition from an Afghanistan-bound truck. Officials said that the seizure included long- and short-barreled rifles and cartridges worth Rs1.4 million. They said that the truck driver, who belonged to Logar province of Afghanistan, was also arrested.

Published in Dawn, August 20th, 2017

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