PEMRA Issues Stern Warning To Media: Clampdown On Hate Speech And Incitement To Violence


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ISLAMABAD: In a decisive move to curb the rise of hate speech and incitement to violence, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has issued stringent directives to all satellite TV channel licensees. This comes in the wake of a tragic incident on May 9, 2023, where state and public properties were attacked, innocent lives endangered, and anti-state sentiments were stirred.

PEMRA, referencing Article 19 of The Constitution of The Islamic Republic of Pakistan, emphasizes the need to balance freedom of speech with maintaining public order. The agency underscores that speech inciting violence or posing a threat to public order can be restricted, especially during times of unrest.

The regulatory authority condemns politically charged individuals who orchestrated anti-state activities with the intention to weaken the Federation of Pakistan. These individuals, acting as hate mongers, aimed to pollute the minds of the public, posing a significant threat to peace and tranquility in the country.

In response, all satellite TV channel licensees are directed to remain vigilant and avoid promoting hate mongers, perpetrators, and their facilitators. PEMRA stresses the importance of adhering to the provisions of the Electronic Media (Programmes and Advertisement) Code of Conduct 2015, along with refraining from providing airtime to those propagating hate speech against the Federation and State Institutions.

The authority explicitly highlights the legal violations associated with airing content that promotes hate or violence, citing various sections of PEMRA Ordinance, PEMRA Rules, and Electronic Media Code of Conduct. PEMRA mandates the strict compliance of its laws and the principles laid down by the Superior Courts.

To ensure effective enforcement, PEMRA directs satellite TV channel licensees to sensitize their Editorial Boards, strictly adhere to PEMRA laws, and implement the Time Delay Mechanism. Additionally, licensees are instructed to establish impartial and independent Editorial Boards as required under the Electronic Media Code of Conduct 2015.

This comprehensive directive, approved by the Chairman of PEMRA, signals a robust stance against hate speech and violence-inciting content, reinforcing the commitment to national harmony and coherence in the electronic media landscape.

Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi is an award-winning digital, print, and broadcast investigative journalist who is the co-founder of The Scoop. He also hosts his web shows 'The Scoop' and 'The Hassan Naqvi Show'.


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