Press Emblem Campaign (PEC), the global media safety and rights body, while expressing relief over the release of senior television personality Ammad Yousaf by a Karachi-based civil court on Thursday, urged the Pakistani military authority to respect media persons.
The director (news) of popular ARY News was arrested on Wednesday over an anti-Pak army comment. The energetic newsman was picked up by a group of armed personnel in plain clothes from his residence in the southern port city of Pakistan during night hours.
Allegations framed against Yousaf were based on a news item that was telecast by ARY News, where it perpetually asked the lower level armed personnel to disobey orders of top military officers.
Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority termed it as a matter of serious concern as the comment was seemingly aimed for mutiny in the name of political tussle between the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.
The authority also warned ARY digital network Chief Salman Iqbal along with anchors Arshad Sharif and Khawar Ghuman for the same.
Media persons across the south Asian nation condemned Yousaf’s arrest and termed it as an act of victimization. They demanded an immediate intervention by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif into the shameful act. The government authority even prevented the transmission of ARY News.
However the court directed for resumption of its transmission across the country.
Blaise Lempen, president of PEC appealed to the Islamabad-based government to respect press freedom, which was committed by PM Sharif as he took over the responsibility.