Karachi: Provincial Minister for Information, Transport and Mass Transit Sharjeel Inam Memon said that Imran Niazi’s government suppressed freedom of expression and left no stone unturned to harm journalists and the media. Journalists who did not support it’s stance were tortured and many renowned anchor persons lost their jobs during previous regime.
He expressed these views while addressing a lunchon of Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists at Karachi Press Club.
The Minister said that if Imran continued in office, media persons would have tortured even more and subjected to the punishment of lashes as like Zia ul Had regime.
He said that rulers are bound to tolerate criticism, but he explained only democratically elected rulers have the courage to tolerate criticism.The Provincial Minister said that the PPP had been subjected to unilateral criticism by the media in the past, but PPP had never adopted an authoritarian attitude against it. During the rule of President Asif Ali Zardari, no one was retaliated against and even no political opponent remained in jail. The PPP has always supported independence of media and participated in journalists’ movements,he added.
He said that the PPP governments have always tried to extend support to journalists who perform their duties by putting their lives at the risk. Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, President Asif Ali Zardari or Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari all have advocated freedom of expression and independence of media and struggled for the betterment of journalists and journalists organization
He added that PPP had always taken measures to improve and uplift the life of media workers. The Minister welcomed the members of the Federal Union of Journalists who came from all over Pakistan and assured them that the Sindh government would implement their recommendations to create conducive working environment for them. He said that support would also be sought from coalition government at federal level to resolve journalists issues.