Top journalist body of Pakistan PFUJ condemns Azhar Abbas and Kamran Khan to play with the future of journalists
Islamabad, Pakistan: The Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has strongly condemned the conduct of Azhar Abbas and anchor Kamran Khan for playing with the future of young journalists.
PFUJ has demanded all media houses of Pakistan not to hire both persons in future for any assignment. Azhar Abbas had also earned negative opinions for allegedly sacking hundreds of employees from Geo News and crash of Geo English Channel that never came on surface after hiring thousands of working journalists when Azhar Abbas abruptly left Geo English and joined Dawn news and then the project of Geo English was delayed. Then he rejoined Geo after leaving Dawn News and then Geo English was abandoned and 90% of journalists were laid off when he became MD. In 2011-2012, a social media campaign was launched against Azhar Abbas who is known for his relations in Pakistani establishment when he sacked over 300 employees from Geo TV for allegedly raising his salary package over millions.
PFUJ will not tolerate any curbs on freedom of expression and democratic institutions, says a resolution passed in an emergency meeting of PFUJ’s Executive Council, which was convened on Saturday to review the challenges facing the media industry.
The meeting also discussed the recent crisis of Bol Network and passed a resolution demanding the government delink Axact scandal from Bol TV and safeguard the rights of media workers associated with Bol TV. The PFUJ said it would not tolerate any illegal steps.
The resolution says that the decision of senior journalists Kamran Khan and Azhar Abbas to quit Bol TV in a difficult time was extremely condemnable. It demanded no media house hire such elements that play with the jobs of working journalists and media workers. The meeting also condemned behaviour of other journalists who left Bol after Axact scandal deepened.
It demanded that all journalist unions revoke membership of such journalists. It also resolved that it will lodge a strong protest against any media house that hires Kamran Khan or Azhar Abbas.
The PFUJ called upon all media owners, Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE), All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) and Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) to ensure working journalists are given their rights, including the 7th wage award, in accordance with the Supreme Court ruling. It also demanded that the families of journalists killed in the line of duty should be given compensation promised to them.
It also appealed to media owners to adopt a strategy for working journalists which might be beneficial for the whole industry.
The PFUJ resolution demanded the government withdraw its decision to put curbs on Bol TV’s transmission.
It also demanded a representative of the PFUJ be included in the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority. The PFUJ decided to stage a protest on Monday for the rights of journalists.
Saturday’s meeting was attended by PFUJ Secretary General Ameen Yousaf and representatives of Punjab Union of Journalists, Gujranwala Union of Journalists, Quetta Union of Journalists, Karachi Union of Journalists, Faisalabad Union of Journalist, Sukkur Union of Journalists, Hyderabad Union of Journalists, Nawabshah Union of Journalists, Khairpur Union of Journalists, Gujrat Union of Journalists, Sargodha Union of Journalists, Rawalpindi Union of Journalists, Islamabad Union of Journalists and Peshawar Union of Journalists.
Meanwhile, a senior lot of anchors believe that every anchor and media practitioner has right to leave and join another organisation for his/her personal interests therefore PFUJ has no right to criticise media practitioners like Azhar Abbas or Kamran Khan. Anchors believe that it is the TRP that decides their fate not other journalists or media bodies including Journalist unions or press clubs.
This is first time PFUJ has taken a stance against sacking and joblessness of media persons and Bol Tv crises is helping to raise voice for the rights of electronic media journalists.