PPMR Ordinance 2017: Information ministry suspends assistant director amid anti-press law reports

Dawood Rehman 07:23 PM | 11 Sep, 2017
PPMR Ordinance 2017: Information ministry suspends assistant director amid anti-press law reports
ISLAMABAD - The Ministry of Information has suspended Assistant Director Saadullah Mahar following widespread criticism from journalistic circles over reports the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government is legislating new anti-press laws to curb freedom of expression.

The announcement comes a day after the country’s information and broadcasting minister said she would order an inquiry against the official responsible for going “behind her back” and ordering drafting of a controversial ordinance that apparently seeks to silence the print media.

On Sunday, Marriyum Aurangzeb said that she had nothing to do with the proposed Pakistan Print Media Regulatory Authority (PPMRA) Ordinance 2017, which was to be taken up by the Press Council of Pakistan (PCP) - the print media regulator - at its 15th general meeting (on Monday).

She further maintained that she was a supporter of press freedom and had worked tirelessly on right to information legislation, which this ordinance would nullify.

Rejecting the proposed law outright, the Press Council members earlier said they won’t allow the agenda item to be discussed at Monday’s meeting.

According to a notification issued from the information ministry on Monday, an enquiry committee has also been constituted over the proposed Ordinance. The enquiry committee is headed by External Publicity Wing Director General Shafqat Jalil.

The committee will send its findings to the information secretary within three days, the notification reads. Until then, two senior officials of the ministry, Nasir Jamal and Tahir Hussain, have been made the officers on special duty.

The notification further states that neither the minister nor the information secretary issued any directives for the formation of a law to regulate print media.

Meanwhile, the PCP also denied any such law existed. “No law over the subject mentioned in print media reports has ever been framed… the legislation process whenever undertaken by the federal government is initiated in consultation with the stakeholders,” according to a PCP statement issued on Sunday.

However, the journalist community has shared concerns with the government of not taking them into confidence before planning such a controversial law which aims to limit freedom of press.

The proposed law, first promulgated by former military dictator, General Ayub Khan, namely Press and Publications Ordinance 1964, “contravenes the provisions of 18th Amendment and will be completely rejected by APNS” Umer Mujib Shami, Secretary General of All Pakistan Newspaper Society, told Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in a meeting on Monday morning.

PM Abbasi categorically assured Mr Shami that his government was not contemplating any change in the present legal structure of Pakistan’s print media. “However, any law or amendment, if needed, will be undertaken in consultation with the APNS, CPNE, PFUJ and other stakeholders,” the PM told the APNS secretary general.

Dawood Rehman
Dawood Rehman

The writer is a member of the staff.


Today's currency exchange rates in Pakistan - Dollar, Euro, Pound, Riyal rates on June 2, 2023

KARACHI - Following are the foreign currency exchange rates for US Dollar, Saudi Riyal, UK Pound Sterling, U.A.E. Dirham, European Euro, and other foreign currencies in Pakistan open market on June 2, 2023 (Friday).

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)

Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar ‎USD 299 302
Euro EUR 321 325
UK Pound Sterling GBP 375.5 380
U.A.E Dirham AED 80 81
Saudi Riyal SAR 79 79
Australian Dollar AUD 198 200
Bahrain Dinar BHD 758.25 766.25
Canadian Dollar CAD 226 228
China Yuan CNY 40.26 40.66
Danish Krone DKK 41.04 41.44
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 36.39 36.74
Indian Rupee INR 3.45 3.56
Japanese Yen JPY 2.25 2.45
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 927.17 936.17
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 61.94 62.54
New Zealand Dollar NZD 172.79 174.79
Norwegians Krone NOK 25.67 25.97
Omani Riyal OMR 740.96 748.96
Qatari Riyal ‎QAR 78.37 79.07
Singapore Dollar SGD 220 222
Swedish Korona SEK 26.36 26.66
Swiss Franc CHF 315.04 317.54
Thai Bhat THB 8.21 8.36

Today's gold rates in Pakistan – June 2, 2023

KARACHI – The price of a single tola of 24-karat gold in Pakistan is Rs 230,000 on Friday. The price of 10 grams of 24k gold was recorded at Rs197,190.   

Likewise, 10 grams of 22k gold were being traded for Rs180,756 while a single tola of 22-karat gold was being sold at Rs 210,832.

Note: The gold rate in Pakistan is fluctuating according to the international market so the price is never been fixed. The below rates are provided by local gold markets and Sarafa Markets of different cities.

City Gold Silver
Lahore PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Karachi PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Islamabad PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Peshawar PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Quetta PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Sialkot PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Attock PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Gujranwala PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Jehlum PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Multan PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Bahawalpur PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Gujrat PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Nawabshah PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Chakwal PKR 230,000 PKR 2125
Hyderabad PKR 229,000 PKR 2125
Nowshehra PKR 229,000 PKR 2125
Sargodha PKR 229,000 PKR 2125
Faisalabad PKR 229,000 PKR 2125
Mirpur PKR 229,000 PKR 2125


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