Islamabad, October 20 – Pakistan on Monday suspended a television channel for 15 days and imposed a fine of Rs.10 million for airing a derogatory programme against the judiciary. The Pakistan Electronic Media Regularity Authority (PEMRA) suspended ARY News’ license for a period of 15 days and imposed a fine of Rs.10 million.
A special meeting of PEMRA was called today to review the talk show anchored by Mubasher Lucman on the orders of the Lahore High Court (LHC). PEMRA officials found the show in contravention with the PEMRA act and its code of conduct.
The regulatory authority had also banned Lucman and his programme “Khara Sach” on Saturday. Earlier on Friday, the LHC issued bailable arrest warrants of ARY News chief executive officer Salman Iqbal, Mubashir Lucman, the programme’s producer and Asim Malik for not appearing before the court despite having been summoned.
The court placed restrictions on airing of the show and participation of the anchor in any other TV programme. It ordered inclusion of the name of Lucman in the Exit Control List (ECL) and summoned the attorney general, Punjab advocate general, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) director general and Lahore district coordination officer on October 21.
Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi issued the orders while hearing a suo motu notice against the respondents for airing an interview of Asim Malik, owner of a firm, Future Concern, in which serious allegations had been leveled against him.