PEMRA imposes ban on live-telecast of Imran Khan's speeches

Media watchdog permits recorded speeches to be aired after 'effective delay mechanism is put in place'


News Desk August 21, 2022
Former prime minister Imran Khan. PHOTO: REUTER/FILE

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) on Saturday imposed a ban on broadcasting live speeches of former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan on all satellite TV channels with immediate effect.

While addressing a protest rally in Islamabad earlier today, Imran warned the IG and DIG of Islamabad police, saying that he will not spare them and register a case against them for “torturing” party leader Shahbaz Gill during physical remand.

He also called out Additional District and Sessions Judge (ADSJ) Zeba Chaudhry for approving police request of physical remand despite knowing that Gill was subjected to “torture”. “We will not leave you [Zeba] and will also file a case against her.”

Read more: Coalition parties demand action against Imran for ‘threatening’ woman judge, police

Soon after Imran's speech, the coalition parties demanded action against the former premier. Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah also vowed to take legal action against Imran for “threatening” the woman judge and police officials.

"It has been observed that Mr Imran Khan, Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, in his speeches/statements is continuously alleging state institutions by leveling baseless allegations and spreading hate speech through his provocative statements against state institutions and officers which is prejudicial to the maintenance of law and order and is likely to disturb public peace and tranquility," a statement from the regulatory authority read.

Pemra said that after analysing the content of Imran's speech, it has been observed that the content was aired live by the licensees without effective time delay mechanism which is the violation provisions of Pemra laws and in disobedience of judgements passed by the honourable courts.

Also read: Imran urges ‘neutrals’ to stand with people instead of ‘thieves’

"The competent authority i.e. Chairman PEMRA in view of the above mentioned background and reasons, in exercise of delegated powers of the Authority vested in Section 27(a) of the PEMRA Ordinance 2002 as amended by PEMRA (Amendment) Act 2007, hereby prohibits broadcast of live speech of Mr Imran Khan on all satellite TV channels with immediate effect," it said.

The media watchdog, however, said that the recorded speeches of the former PM would only be permitted to be aired after effective delay mechanism is put in place in order to ensure effective monitoring and editorial control in conformity with Pemra laws.

"Furthermore, all satellite TV channels are directed to ensure that an impartial and independent Editorial Board be constituted as required under Clause 17 of Electronic Media (Programmes and Advertisement) Code of Conduct 2015 in order to ensure that their platform is not used by anyone for uttering remarks in any manner which are contemptuous and against any state institution and hateful, prejudicial to law and order situation in the country (in any manner even repeatedly in programmes / talk shows/ news bulletins)."

It warned of legal action as per Pemra laws in case of any violation of the directives.

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