Illegal closure of any channel is against norms of democracy: Rashid

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Information Broadcasting and National Heritage (IB&NH) Senator Pervaiz Rashid said on Friday that disturbance in transmission of any TV channel on the part of cable operators was an illegal act as it deprives the masses of their right to information.

It is also clear violation of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) rules, the minister said in a statement issued here on Friday.

He said that closure of the transmission of any TV channel tantamount to curb the freedom of expression.

PEMRA, he said, has been directed to cancel licence of those cable operators involved in illegal stoppage of transmission of any channel. “We believe in freedom of expression and it is evident from the fact that the democratic government tolerated criticism and did not even think to take any action against telecasting speeches on baseless allegations and provocative remarks,” the minister emphasized.

Senator Pervaiz Rashid said that the government would not tolerate any hurdle in the way of smooth transmission of any channel as the practice of illegal closure is against the norms of democracy and independence of media.