KARACHI: The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE), while reiterating complete solidarity with the freedom of the media, expressed extreme annoyance over the ongoing campaign of criticising and levelling allegations against journalists and the media by Imran Khan, chief of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.
The CPNE vowed to resist, defend and counter the campaign with full strength. It condemned the direct and indirect pressure on journalists and the media. The CPNE announced this in its annual general meeting held recently. It was presided over by Mujeebur Rahman Shami.
A resolution was passed unanimously in the meeting. It mentioned that the media organisations and journalists were facing extreme pressure from state and non-state institutions, groups, different political parties, religious and non-religious extremists.
It mentioned that the government was not taking any action against these elements and appears to have failed in providing protection to journalists and media organisations. It is stated in the resolution that the struggle for media freedom is exemplary. The journalists and media bodies faced extreme physical and mental torture and monetary losses, while a number of journalists have even sacrificed their lives.
In spite of all these circumstances, certain political parties have started extreme and baseless criticism without any discrimination against journalists and the media, particularly Imran Khan, chief of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, is making hurtful criticism. The media and journalists have taken serious notice of this campaign.
The resolution said the CPNE deplores this unfair attitude of the PTI chief with all the media groups and journalists of levelling allegations. This attitude was an open assault on the freedom of media and will also harm the democratic values in the country.
The meeting stressed on Imran Khan to come forward with proof if he had any against any media group or journalist. The CPNE, being the representative body of editors of newspapers, is ready to investigate and play an effective role in this regard.
It has been stated in the resolution that the CPNE believes in free journalistic practices and discourages an irresponsible and unprofessional attitude. In the same manner, the CPNE reserves the right to resist and give an effective response to the assaults on freedom of media from any political or non-political body or any religious group.