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Pak journalists' union calls Imran Khan govt's proposed media authority law as 'draconian'

ANI | Updated: Oct 11, 2021 21:15 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], October 11 (ANI): A multi-stakeholders convention of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) rejected the proposed law Pakistan Media Development Authority (PMDA) as a "draconian and black law" on Saturday, reported local media.
Demanding the government to immediately withdraw its draft, PFUJ warned that if it is not withdrawn, the civil society and trade unions would back the federation's plans to launch a countrywide agitation, The News International reported.
Endorsing the PFUJ decision of not holding any kind of dialogue with the government over PMDA, the convention lambasted the government for imposing unannounced censorship, curtailing press freedom and paralysing the whole press and media industry. "The trade unions, political workers, lawyers and civil society pledged standing with the journalist community shoulder by shoulder in the fight for freedom of the press," The News International reported.
The convention was hosted by the Multan Union of Journalists (MUJ) and was chaired by the PFUJ President Shahzada Zulfiqar on Saturday. Representatives from all walks of life participated in the conference.
Stating that the media has a crucial role to play in protecting the democratic traditions, former prime minister and opposition leader in Senate Yusuf Raza Gilani stressed that his party would fully support the legitimate demands of journalists.

He said that Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) believes in the power of democracy and the Constitution.
Praising journalists for fighting for their rights, senior politician Javed Hashmi pledged to always stand with journalists in their struggle for their rights.
PFUJ President Shahzada Zulfiqar said journalists were the vanguard of democracy and a person's freedom and emphasised it was their responsibility to stand up against the oppressors and speak for rights.
"He asked Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry to sit down with the journalist bodies and discuss the issue. He said advertisements to the media had been stopped. The PFUJ had no agenda against the government. The PFUJ had its 19 points charter of demand," The News International reported.
Further, Zulfiqar said that PFUJ would launch its march from Quetta in the first week of November.
Punjab Chief Minister Nadeem Qureshi's spokesperson said that the government policy objections were coming up regarding fake news.
The spokesperson said that it was important that they know the facts about any news they were going through today. He also stressed that the payments of the media houses had been cleared by the government, the Pakistani publication added. (ANI)