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LAHORE, Aug 18: The South Asian Free Media Association (Safma) said on Thursday it was planning to send a libel notice to Mr Zaid Hamid over his remarks during a television talk show a day earlier.

Mr Hamid’s was a fierce attack which led some 50 leading media professionals and editors on Thursday to rise up in support of Safma.

“The leading media personalities took serious exception to the unfounded and shameful accusations hurled by an irresponsible person against a media body of most credible journalists of the South Asian region...,” a statement said.

It said the talk show in which Mr Hamid made his remarks violated “all ethics of professional journalism”.

It described the remarks as defamatory and as being aimed at inciting public sentiment and called the talk show an attempt at “maligning a media body and its leaders”.

The statement pulled up the TV channel and the host of the talk show for not having the decency to invite a “Safma representative to rebut atrocious allegations” that were aired.

The decision to send a legal notice to the “accusers”, the statement said, was taken by Safma Secretary-General Imtiaz Alam, Safma’s Pakistan President Nusrat Javed and other office bearers of its various branches in Pakistan.

They termed the accusations “highly irresponsible and provocative conduct”.

The statement issued by Safma carries names of the following journalists and media personalities who, the media body said, have come to its defence:

IA Rehman, M Ziauddin, Zahid Husain, Nazir Leghari, Husain Naqi, Sadaf Arshad, Attaul Musawar, Amir Mahmood, Siddique Baloch, Tariq Chaudhry, Tahir Rathore, Khalid Farooqi, Ayaz Khan, Raza Rumi, Shahzada Zulfiqar, Nusrat Javed, Sirmed Manzoor, Agha Nasir, Iftikhar Ahmad, Babar Ayaz, Shamim Shahid, Saleem Shahid, Dr Jabbar Khattak, Ghazi Salahuddin, Mujahid Barelvi, Irfana Mallah, Jehangeer Aslam, GN Mughal, Ghulam Nabi Chandio, Syed Mumtaz Shah, Lala Asad, Khalid Khokar, Fayyaz Naich, Amer Sindhu, Anjum Rasheed, Khalid Chaudhry, Shoaib Adil, Saida Fazal, Munno Bhai, Ibrahim Shirwani, Asma Shirazi, Afzal Khan, Mustansar Javed, Rana Qaisar, Shamsul Islam Naz, Khushnood Ali Khan, Mehmal Sarfraz, Khaled Ahmed, Allama Sadiq Azhar and Imtiaz Alam.