ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has imposed Rs1 million fine on News One TV channel for airing ‘malicious’ content against National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman retired Justice Javed Iqbal on May 23.
According to Pemra’s order, M/s Airwaves Media Pvt Ltd (News One channel) repeatedly flashed audio and video clips allegedly showing the NAB chairman in conversation with a woman. The TV channel claimed that the defamatory statements and clips were being aired in public interest. However, later, it aired a rebuttal and apology, stating the management had decided to stop the airing of the clips as they were unconfirmed and unverified.
The order continues to say that the channel was issued a show-cause notice on May 24 with the directives to submit a written reply and appear for personal hearing on May 31, which was rescheduled for June 10 on the request of the TV channel.
However, the TV channel failed to give a satisfactory written reply to the show-cause notice and also could not provide any tangible justification for airing such content.
Therefore, in view of the recommendations of the personal hearing committee, M/s Airwaves Media Pvt Ltd was imposed a fine of Rs1m, to be paid within one month of the issuance of the decision.
In case of non-compliance, strict legal action will be initiated against the TV channel, which may result in suspension of its licence.
“M/s Airwaves Media Pvt Ltd is also directed to constitute In-House Editorial Committee and ensure compliance of Pemra laws to sift unwarranted content before telecast,” the order concluded.
Published in Dawn, June 13th, 2019