Chairman of Cable Operators Association of Pakistan (CAP) Khalid Arian has expressed solidarity with the Pakistan army and said the association will support the defence institution. Geo group is poised to ruin the dignity and safety of the state and its entities, Arian said.
Addressing a crowded press conference at the Karachi Press Club on Thursday, he warned the Geo group to desist from its ‘nefarious designs’ or face a boycott from the cable operator association.
The media group, Arian said, ‘is involved in negative propaganda against the stability of Pakistan, people’s solidarity and the Pakistan army and sensitive organisations’. The four provincial presidents of CAP and office-bearers from across Pakistan were also present at the press conference.
Arian said that CAP strongly condemns the attack on senior journalist and anchorperson Hamid Mir and demands that the government immediately arrest those involved. The association, he said, ‘cannot support any telecasts that pose a threat to the ideology of Pakistan, its stability, Pakistan army, sensitive organisations and the judiciary’.
“The way Geo blamed Pakistan’s state organization ISI and its chief demanding his immediate resignation in irresponsible haste and ran the item as breaking news continuously cannot be described as anything other than anti-state and anti-Pakistan actions,” he said. Arian said Geo’s broadcasts were not stopped on behalf of the association and any change in the media group’s channels were made at the discretion of the cable operators.
Arian also said the involvement of then chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry enabled Geo to get its fifth licence from the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra).
“If Geo accepted Pemra as an impartial body then [while getting its fifth licence], why is it accusing the watchdog of being partial now? Is this fair?” he questioned while talking to Express News.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 2nd, 2014.