Television Industry: PTI calls for curbs on foreign shows

Published: January 6, 2013
Pemra must take immediate action to regulate foreign shows on local channels: Shafqat Mehmood PHOTO: FILE

Pemra must take immediate action to regulate foreign shows on local channels: Shafqat Mehmood PHOTO: FILE

LAHORE: The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) has called on the government to introduce restrictions on foreign content on television, which threatens the local industry according to a press release.

PTI Information Secretary Shafqat Mehmood said that the “increasing ratio of foreign and Urdu-dubbed content during prime time” would lead to the “loss of millions of rupees in investment as local production houses are likely to be shut down”. The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) must take immediate action to regulate foreign shows on local channels, he said. “Pemra’s code should be enforced and the authority should revisit its rules about landing rights. Pemra should include the United Producers Association as a stakeholder when making any policy affecting the local TV industry,” he said. He added that the government should protect the country’s cultural heritage and industries.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 6th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (42)

  • Blithe
    Jan 6, 2013 - 2:00PM

    And what about all the Bollywoid filth we are subject ,
    including Bollywood headlines during prime time.Recommend

  • jawid
    Jan 6, 2013 - 2:26PM

    Also, such filth is not in line with our culture, pakistani channels should only air decent dramaz


  • Saleem
    Jan 6, 2013 - 2:30PM

    So we do not like soaps from a “brother islamic country”! Their liberal islam does not appear kosher!!


  • Donga Bonga
    Jan 6, 2013 - 3:23PM

    Foreign ho ya local drama drama hota hai.


  • Banday
    Jan 6, 2013 - 3:24PM

    These Turkish soaps are not banned in Arab world & other European countries, where they are shown dubbed in local languages for years. In a globalized & increasingly connected world, PTI appears to be supporting uncompetitive & oligopolistic economy in the cultural sphere. Market manipulation in one segment can become a precedent for other economic sectors to demand similar restrictions on imported goods. Such policies have always made few people rich at the cost of captive customers…


  • Mj
    Jan 6, 2013 - 3:26PM

    Why does PTI want to ensure that I do not cosider voting for this party. Isolationism has harmed the country quite enough already.


  • Zoaib
    Jan 6, 2013 - 4:00PM

    I believe it would be worthwhile to read the complete press release on about this (ET has reported only a section of it):

    While India has a state ban on Pakistani channels and content, Pakistan’s drama industry has held its ground in the face of competition. But what it needs is a level playing field, with a united Team Pakistan comprising all its stakeholders. We need to compel our own people to build their industries, guarding our cultural heritage and yet, keep their windows open to reach out to the world with their own products. We should keep in mind that local productions are also connected to our economy. A huge number of people are associated with this industry. Broadcast of too much foreign content on TV channels will ruin the careers of people associated with the drama industry. Let us save our drama industry from foreign influence before it is too late.


  • imran bhatt
    Jan 6, 2013 - 4:53PM

    Beware! if you voted this party in, today they tried to control your living rooms, tomorrow they might rule in your bedrooms. This is same old Zia Huq kind of agenda.


  • nassi
    Jan 6, 2013 - 5:07PM

    Instead of placing absurd restrictions on foreign shows we need to face the facts. Our country’s production companies must get their act together and try to produce shows that can compete against the imports.


  • intolerant
    Jan 6, 2013 - 5:41PM

    People should be free to decide whatever they want to watch… No one should impose their ideology on others… You don’t wanna watch it, you are free to change the channel…

    Not that I like any of the Turkish or for that matter Indian soaps.. But if anyone wants to watch them they should get to… SAY NO TO CENSORSHIP…


  • Mohammad Assad
    Jan 6, 2013 - 5:44PM

    This will be similar to the womens reserved seat issue….people will mock/abuse Imran Khan and PTI even though they agree with him.
    i.e. Criticism for the sake of criticism.


  • Raheel Ehsaan
    Jan 6, 2013 - 5:48PM

    This is called “spoilt sportsmanship ” we can’t come at par so lets ban them and subject forcibly the audience to watch dramas that they don’t want , so in-short you are making a mockery of yourself PTI by giving such statements , let us live and breathe the way we seem fit stop dictating us because its not going to happen anymore .


  • Turbo Lover
    Jan 6, 2013 - 5:55PM

    True, this must happen to help out our film industry.


  • pk
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:05PM

    Advocates of our culture should not open their mouths. We know what kind our culture is. Frankly as a starter its nothing, culture are for nations not for hooligans/tribes/ethnocentric like us. PTI you have lost our vote since the day you became an advocate for radicals and mr IK says that he cant condemn terrorists because later on they would target him. What leader he is, scarey cat!


  • @@
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:17PM

    I agree Drama, drama hota hai local ho ya foreign ;) On serious note, if PTI has issued a statement against Turkish content than why silent on Indian soaps from Zee, Star Plus, Colors, etc. The later ones have damaged our younger generations more than what is expected from Turkish content. Policies or statements should be given keeping everything around in context and shouldn’t be unilateral !!!


  • faraz
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:21PM

    And people should watch local third class dramas


  • @rham
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:21PM

    Great stance by the PTI!


  • Muhammad
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:28PM

    OOpsss… Shafqat Mehmood sb. have you resolved all other national issues that you are so worried about dubbed dramas? by the way does your logic also apply to foriegn literature being taught in our universities and colleges at all level, even, Shakspere??? whats your policy ?

    Come on…why all of you (politicians) take refuge behind religious and “qaumi” sentiments instead of delivering some thing meaningful.Recommend

  • Lobster
    Jan 6, 2013 - 6:34PM

    You wont vote because it is not allowing foreign dramas and trying to save local industry?


  • aaaaa
    Jan 6, 2013 - 7:02PM

    Why? whats the incentive for local shows to improve otherwise? idiotic populist stance.


  • Pakistani
    Jan 6, 2013 - 7:32PM

    Coming from PTI: Thats highly unprofessional statement, i never expected this from this party, who, happens to throw high statements, honestly, if this is the attitude how do you plan to run the economy against better other players around. Infact,. the local industry must learn a lesson, treat them, gain advantage on producing effective soaps. Poor thoughts, i must say coming from our industry. Does that also mean we should stop watching Hollywood movies too???


  • Khan Gul
    Jan 6, 2013 - 7:34PM


    Rehman Malik banned Mobile phones
    PTI will ban television shows

  • Fehima
    Jan 6, 2013 - 8:11PM

    @Khan Gul:

    And Imran Khan will have tea with the terrorists. Great job, PTI!! Keep up the stupidity. That way, we will all know what this party is actually capable of.


  • unmet46
    Jan 6, 2013 - 8:33PM

    Some Pakistani channels have started to appear as Indian channels even during the prime time. We can watch foreign shows on foreign channels if we want to.. why play them during the PRIME TIME, on Pakistani Channels?? this is the point. The “8:00 pm drama slot” should be preserved for Pakistani dramas, people still have the choice to switch to Indian channels during that time.

    Competition does NOT mean that we allow Indian / Turkish content on our own channels during the prime time. There could however be some once in a week time reserved for foreign dramas at some time (other than 8 pm).


    Jan 6, 2013 - 8:35PM

    go go pti


  • Fahad Khan
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:00PM

    Others should support PTI’s stance


  • Zeeshan
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:14PM

    PTI should try coming in the government first! Others are stealing the show from PTI and they are giving statements what kind of entertainment ppl should and shouldnt have! absurd :S


  • Raza Khan
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:27PM

    IK wake up from your deep sleep! World has become a Global Village.


  • Nwaq
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:34PM

    Good point raised by PTI and it should also be applied for Indian mindless content.


  • xyxyxt
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:43PM

    Please! If you want Turkish drams out then Indian content must also be out of our media. Our media provides free publicity to Bollywood music, movies and actors. That must also stop.
    I m appalled at the explicit content in Turkish dramas. They are too westernised are even more vulgar than Indian movies. This is something we dont want to watch in our living rooms.


  • Aamer Khawaja
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:48PM

    Next up from PTI, ban import of cars so local industry can grow(read: suck the blood out of their customers).


  • Aamer Khawaja
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:53PM

    On a serious note, it that the best Asad Umer could come up with? did he even try to explain how the local industry is protected for a short time to allow them to gain momentum and then bring in competition? Nobody complained when Walls ice cream was brought into Pakistan, nearly wiping out Igloo. That my friend is facing up to challenge like a man, don’t cry like a baby


  • ASQ
    Jan 6, 2013 - 10:53PM

    No ban please turkish actresses are the only stumbling block for me from becoming suicide bomber!!!!


  • Parvez
    Jan 6, 2013 - 11:52PM

    I’ve heard that this Turkish thing will soon die out. The Turks are asking for more than what we are ready to pay………….so in the end it will be economics that kills it.Recommend

  • anon
    Jan 7, 2013 - 1:06AM

    seriously PTI there is so much more ailing this country. is this the only thing u could pick on?


  • phenom
    Jan 7, 2013 - 1:39PM

    why all political parties like pti and poeople from media industry are protesting against foriegn dramas specially turkish dramas dubbed in urdu why they are not protesting against indian drama indian dance shows which are on air on many channels and big boss which ary digital broadcasting from last many years why there is discrimnination only turkih dramas why the people of pakistani are not allow to decide what they want to see or watch.


  • sattar rind
    Jan 7, 2013 - 3:17PM

    He wants to be Ball thakary? 1st may get solved on issue that is accountability before election than he intervene in other issues. or we may assume that he last 1st battle and now to he want to scapes in othe issues?


  • Zab
    Jan 7, 2013 - 5:22PM

    Funny statement


  • Concerned
    Jan 8, 2013 - 1:34AM

    “PTI calls for increased investment in Pakistan’s fledgling entertainment industry” may have been a more appropriate headline. The statement doesn’t explicitly call for curbs on foreign shows, it seems to convey the genuine concern that our entertainment industry is sub-par relative to many regional industries, and should receive support from PEMRA.

    Needless to say, I think it is ridiculous that foreign TV shows are curtailed in the name of cultural preservation – we need to step up to the challenge, not hide in a shell. North Korea probably has superbly preserved its culture and media, but is it good in the current environment?

    The headline, though, is a bit misleading.


  • Enlightened
    Jan 8, 2013 - 3:35PM

    Not only tea, IK made a statement on an Indian TV channel that he will find some fast bowlers and hard hitting batsmen from FATA area which really means Pak Taliban would soon give up violence and shall be playing cricket matches in Pakistan and at international level.


  • aj
    Jan 8, 2013 - 7:15PM

    IK wants actors’ support..


  • MAD
    Jan 9, 2013 - 10:17AM

    @Enlightened: Are you aware that Shahid Afridi hails from FATA and he isnt the only cricketer from that region


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