May 09, 2012

PEMRA to Take Action Against Derogatory Programmes, Excessive Advertisements and Foreign Content

PEMRA, in pursuance to the decision of the Authority in its 75th meeting held last day at PEMRA Headquarters Islamabad has issued final notices to TV channels involved in airing derogatory, humiliating programmes purposely meant for character assassination of individuals and organization in the guise of parody or satire. The Authority also conclusively asked channels to stop excessive advertisements and foreign content being run beyond the permissible limit.

As per law TV channels cannot run more than 12 minutes of advertisement in an hour. Similarly, the proportion of foreign content cannot be beyond 10% of total broadcast in 24 hours.

The Authority earlier in October last year had also issued advice to all channels asking them to exercise prudence while airing satirical or comical programmes as these programmes should not be targeting any specific individual or organization. Adding insult to or disgrace someone is no way an act of joy but are highly condemnable being unethical and immoral. No law of the land even Islam and the freedom of expression and speech enshrined under Constitution of Pakistan permit such acts to defame, malign, slander or harm repute of others merely on the basis of personal likings or disliking.

The increasing vulgarity and indecency in prgrammes is another big challenge poised to PEMRA. In this regard, across the board warnings have been issued to TV channels, FM radios and cable operators to stop all such programmes which are generally perceived in disconformity to our socio-cultural or religious norms.

Media has grown to a greater extent in Pakistan and likewise a greater degree of responsibility and sensibility is expected of it. The Authority has spent more than a decade in consultative interactions with all stakeholders asking them to exercise self regulation but unfortunately no serious effort has been taken by them. On the contrary, they are engaged in passing buck to PEMRA for all their wrong doings, said PEMRA.

Keeping in view the burgeoning public wrath and complaints against programmes and advertisements of TV channels, the Authority has decided to take strict action under the law against all those who are involved in unethical media practices despite repeated advices, warnings and notices. They are being given the last opportunity to stop violations otherwise their licenses would be suspended followed by heavy fines.

 

General Manager (Media & PR)