ISLAMABAD: The federal cabinet on Tuesday decided to block media insurance and interviews of politicians who are convicts or below-trail prisoners and directed the Pakistan digital Media Regula­tory Authority (Pemra) to meet its “responsibility” to deter airing of such programmes with the aid of digital media.

A cupboard meeting, presided over with the aid of high Minister Imran Khan, also unveiled details of overseas visits of former president Asif Ali Zardari and previous top ministers Nawaz Sharif and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, looking at that the trio had made 245 overseas visits on which over Rs3.5 billion turned into spent.

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On the difficulty of the video leak related to an alleged verbal exchange between duty courtroom judge Arshad Malik and Nasir Butt, a near aide of Nawaz Sharif, the cupboard reached the belief that because the video was made public by using Maryam Nawaz, daughter of Mr Sharif and a senior chief of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), therefore the onus to prove the allegations towards the choose become on her and not the choose and the judiciary.

Onus to prove authenticity of judge’s video is on PML-N, observes cabinet

Addressing a submit-cabinet meeting press conference, schooling Minister Shafqat Mehmood said top Minister Imran Khan and individuals of his cupboard unanimously decided that no convicted or beneath-trial prisoner should be given media insurance or should be allowed to offer an interview. He quoted the high minister as announcing, “those who've plundered country wide wealth and brought the usa on the verge of crumble should now not be glorified. No democracy permits interviews and media coverage of these who have been arrested on fees of corruption.”

He, however, said the government had no longer directed Pemra to shut down any personal television channel as it became an independent body ready to take its own decisions.

Pemra suspended transmission of three non-public tv channels multiple days in the past for airing an interview of PPP chief Asif Ali Zardari who's in the custody of the country wide responsibility Bureau and facing a trial in a fake money owed / cash laundering case.

The authority also took off air an interview of the previous president which turned into being conducted by way of anchor Hamid Mir on July 1, at the premises of the Parliament residence wherein the former had come to wait a country wide meeting consultation after the residence’s speaker had issued his production order.

The authorities is reportedly of the view that the manufacturing orders of Mr Zardari have been issued best to permit him to attend the assembly consultation and not for giving any interview to ‘undermine’ the judiciary and trial court docket.

The schooling minister said the cupboard decided that Pemra might be requested why it changed into permitting some thing which did not take region in any democracy.

Mr Mehmood stated the manufacturing order of another detained competition leader and PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif were issued to enable him to attend the national assembly session however he summoned country wide responsibility Bureau NAB) chairman retd Javed Iqbal to a house committee assembly to grill him over the investigation being performed towards him (Mr Sharif) in a corruption case.

“while Shahbaz Sharif’s production orders have been issued, he summoned the NAB chairman who had arrested him. Wherein democracy do such matters take vicinity,” the minister stated.

He said ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) believed in freedom of the press as both the celebration and the media had stood together at some stage in the former’s struggle for 22 years.

Video controversy

After a dialogue on the purported video of choose Arshad Malik who had convicted former high minister Nawaz Sharif, the cupboard came to the conclusion that the onus to show the authenticity of the video tape changed into on Maryam Nawaz and not the judge or the judiciary. “it's far the obligation of the PML-N to get forensic audit of the video tape performed,” Mr Mehmood stated.

“The PML-N has a records of attacking judiciary and the fresh video leak is an try to make the selections of the responsibility court docket controversial,” he stated.

The training minister claimed that former president Zardari made 134 foreign visits on which Rs 1.42bn became spent. Of the 134 visits, 48 have been private excursions, he stated.

Nawaz Sharif as PM, he said, made ninety two overseas visits at a price Rs1.83bn and 25 of them have been non-public visits.

throughout his 10-month tenure as prime minister, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi made 19 overseas visits and Rs 259.5 million changed into spent on them, the minister stated.

“however, top Minister Imran Khan has determined to live on the house of Pakistan’s ambassador throughout his coming go to to the usa,” he stated, adding that the members of the PM’s delegation could stay at a 3-famous person lodge.

Structural reforms

The cupboard additionally approved structural reforms in all 441 institutions, departments and corporations operating underneath the federal authorities.

Adviser to the PM on Austerity and Reforms Dr Ishrat Hussain offered a document on restructuring of the establishments.

The cabinet authorised formation of committee -- comprising relevant secretaries, Shafqat Mehmood, Defence Minister Pervez Khattak, Shahzad Arbab, an adviser to the PM, and Kashmir Committee chairman Fakhar Imam -- to enforce the guidelines made within the record.

Dr Hussain said of the 441 institutions, it changed into advocated that forty three ought to be surpassed over to the newly formed frame Sarmaya Pakistan for privatisation, 14 ought to be exceeded over to the provinces and Gilgit-Baltistan, eight departments have to be dissolved, 35 must be merged with others, 17 ought to be restructured and 324 ought to be retained by the Centre.

The cupboard additionally determined to lessen gas Infrastructure improvement Cess to offer comfort to the farmers in provision of urea fertiliser.

PML-N reaction

Reacting to the cabinet’s disclosures approximately foreign visits of Nawaz Sharif, PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb stated in a announcement that the ex-PM paid authentic visits for the sake of the united states of america and “no longer for begging as is being carried out with the aid of prime Minister Imran Khan”.

She said $60 billion China-Pakistan financial hall became one of the results of Mr Sharif’s visits. “Nawaz Sharif added the country’s increase to 5.Eight according to cent and provided jobs to the kids whilst you [Imran Khan] are making younger humans jobless,” she introduced.

published in sunrise, July tenth, 2019