The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has banned live/recorded coverage of rallies, public gatherings, and processions in response to a letter from a law enforcement agency regarding security concerns. The regulator has observed that satellite TV channels have been showing footage of violent mobs, attacks on police, and law enforcement agencies without any editorial oversight. It says the live telecast creates chaos and panic among viewers and law enforcement officers. PEMRA’s order prohibits broadcasting including from the Judicial Complex in Islamabad, with firms warned that their license will be suspended if they flout the ban. Further, PEMRA has also barred broadcasting content pertaining to the conduct of sitting high court and Supreme Court judges, which is in violation of a judgment passed in 2018 by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Justice Qazi Faez Isa criticized PEMRA for imposing restrictions on news channels and argued that the regulator’s moves were suppressing media. He urged PEMRA to take action against false news but warned that people would switch to social media if limitations were imposed on news channels.

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By hassani

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