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Showing posts from March, 2013

Media landscape and polls

Courtesy:- Malik Muhammad Ashraf

Balanced media coverage for 2013 elections

The report of the Hutchison Commission submitted in the USA in 1947 is regarded as the Magna Carte of the modern concept of freedom of expression and media’s responsibilities towards society. It unequivocally emphasized the need for media to provide accurate, truthful and comprehensive account of events, act as a forum for exchange of comment and criticism, present and clarify goals and values of the society and make sure that it projected a representative picture of the constituent groups of the society. The report also reiterated the fact that society and public had a right to expect high standards of performance and as such intervention of the government could be justified to secure public good.

The ethical and professional codes of conduct for the media drawn up by UNESCO, International Federation of Journalists, media associations, press councils in the countries where self-regulatory arrangement is in pl…

Doubts over Iran-Pakistan pipeline

Courtesy:- Malik Muhammad Ashraf


More to gas pipeline project than point scoring

The Pak-Iran gas pipeline is not only important for energy starved Pakistan but also for Iran in terms of diluting the impact of UN and US sanctions against it for refusing to abandon its nuclear programme but also to show the world that it was not isolated, more so in its own region. The groundbreaking ceremony of the Pakistani section of the pipeline on 11 March despite US threats of sanctions against Pakistan, provides much required props to Iran to reinforce that notion.

Propagation of wrong notions

Courtesy:-  Malik Muhammad Ashraf


The ECP is a constitutional body bound to work within the framework of the constitution and the existing law

The speculations about an interim set-up for a longer period and postponement of elections had hardly died down, when another non-issue has been stoked into a pivot, courtesy a hyper active section of media. A sustained campaign is being run to create doubts about the ability of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold free and fair elections, in the wake of difference of opinion between the ECP and the government over the changes proposed by the latter in the nomination forms for the candidates and extension in the scrutiny period. It is also being alleged that all political parties represented in parliament, including the major opposition party Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz in collusion with the government are trying to protect the corrupt elements with a view to pave the way for their return to parliament, the government by not agreei…

Democracy is here to stay

Courtesy:-  S Rahman   


Attending a seminar addressed the other day by Federal Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira and senior journalists, on ‘Why is democracy essential for Pakistan’, the speakers talked at length on the issues confronting the country on the path of democracy but the gist of the seminar, as summed up by Kaira, was democracy is the only way out of all the crises, whether political, economic, social or sectarian.

The right to decide

Courtesy:-  Malik Muhammad Ashraf


In international relations, the foremost considerations are serving, protecting and upholding national interests, mutuality of interests between states and fulfilling obligations that come with being a member of the international community. The point of reference invariably should be the advancement of national objectives in consonance with the aspirations of the people. But the Pak-US relationship, regrettably, has been contrary to these considerations.

The relations between the two countries have mostly served Washington’s strategic and global interests at Islamabad’s expense. Successive Pakistani governments have maintained this one-sided relationship, despite high anti-US feelings existing among the people. Several examples can be quoted, which reveal that rulers and people in Pakistan have been poles apart on international and foreign policy issues.

Pakistan’s alliance with the US, by choice or coerced partnership (as seems to be the case in the …

IP a moment of rejoicing

Courtesy:-  S Rahman


It is indeed a moment of rejoicing. The people are happy that the government of Pakistan has finally resolved to go ahead with the Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline. People are yet happier that the
 rumor mills have come to a standstill that was bent upon tarnishing the image of PPP-led government and the PPP Co-Chairman and President, Asif Ali Zardari.