Pakistan Electronic Media, Regulatory Authority, Islamabad has issued the official Notification letter on 15th January, 2020 in connection with Off The Record ARY News prohibition order 2020 PEMRA.
Whereas, M/s. ARY Communication Pvt. Ltd. “ARY News” on January 14, 2020, aired a programme titled “OFF THE RECORD” hosted by “Mr Kashif Abbasi” with the panelists Mr Faisal Vowda, Mr Qamar Zaman Kaira and Mr Javed Abbasi.
During the show, one of the panelists Mr Faisal Vowda performed very unethical act while starting his arguments on the subject being discussed. Subsequently, arguments made by Mr Vowda were not only extremely frivolous derogatory but also an attempt to debate a state institution.
Whereas, the role of programme host Mr Kashif Abbasi was quite unprofessional who actually did not intervene or stopped that unethical act performed by one of the panelists during a live show rather took the entire incident casually and kept smiling/ cherishing such occurrence.
Whereas, content aired live during the programme “OFF THE RECORD” prima-facie appears to be a willful attempt to debate and demean a state institution by dragging it unnecessarily in a debate.
This act of the host is also in violation of clauses 3(1)(e,j), 4(7)(b), 4(10), 5, 13 and 17 of Electronic Media (Programmed and Advertisements) Code of Conduct, 2015, read with Section 27(a) of PEMRA Ordinance 2002 as amended by PEMRA (Amendment) Act 2007.
Therefore in view of the aforementioned reasons the competent authority decides as under:
(i). In exercise of delegated powers of the Authority vested in Section 27(a) of the PEMRA Ordinance 2002 as amended by PEMRA (Amendment) Act 2007, the broadcast of rebroadcast of a programme titled “OFF THE RECORD” is prohibited with immediate effect for 60 (sixty) starting from January 16, 2020.
The appearance of the host of the programme Mr Kashif Abbasi is also banned for 60 (sixty) days. During the ban, he shall not conduct this show “OFF THE RECORD” or shall not appear on “ARY NEWS” or any other television channel as a guest/ analyst or expert.
In case of non-compliance by “ARY NEWS” the Authority shall proceed under PEMRA laws which may result in suspension. revocation of satellite TV channel conferred to M/s ARY Communication Pvt Ltd “ARY NEWS“.
Nevertheless, any licenses, which provides its platform to Mr Kashif Abbasi in any manner shall also be prosecuted under Section 29 & 30 of the PEMRA Ordinance 2002 as amended PEMRA (Amendment) Act 2007. This issue with the approval of the competent authority.