An interview of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari conducted by senior journalist and anchorperson Hamid Mir was taken off air within a few minutes of broadcasting on Geo News Monday evening, leaving social media in a big debate, whether Mr. Asif ALi Zardari’s interview, (who is attending national assembly on production order) should go on-air or not . Hamid Mir was also invited in Dawn’s ‘Zara Hat Kay’ to give details about the Zardari’s interview but before the start of the show Dawn management also asked Hamid Mir not to appear in the show.
The channel ran a ticker at 8 pm — the time interview was supposed to be broadcast– that the show, Capital Talk, won’t be aired.
When contacted, a source in Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA), on the condition of anonymity, told a newspaper that the authority has nothing to do with stopping the show.
PEMRA’s Code of Ethics also doesn’t mention anything related to a ban on broadcast of interviews of the lawmakers who are arrested, but out on production orders. The interview was conducted at the Parliament House when Asif Ali Zardari’s production orders were issued so that the lawmaker could attend the budget session.
The senior journalist, who was interviewing the former president, took Twitter to express his opinion and dismay. “Interview of Asif Zardari stopped on Geo News within few minutes those who stopped it have no courage to accept publically that they stopped it,” he wrote on the micro-blogging website. Hamid Mir was not happy and was furious on the people behind this closure of the show while on the other hand senior journalist Rauf Klasra was critic on the stance of Hamid Mir on moral grounds. Following are some screen shots of the conversation between Hamid Mir and Rauf Klasra.
— Moazzama Ali🇵🇰 (@moaxxama) July 2, 2019
Further, the PPP leader’s son and aspiring politician also Tweeted about the incident saying, “Selected government only wants to hear selected voices. President Zardari’s interview with
@HamidMirPAK censored. Pulled from air when it had already started. No difference in Zias Pakistan, Musharrafs Pakistan & NayaPakistan. This is no longer the free country Quaid promised us”.