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Lahore High Court Issues Notice to PEMRA

A notice was issued to PEMRA by Lahore High Court Justice on Friday. This notice addressed the Federal Government and Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority on a petition which challenged the ban of Indian content broadcasted in Pakistan.

M/S Leo Communications was behind the petition assailing a circular which was issued by PEMRA on 19th Oct 2016.

Lahore High Court on Indian TV content

Taffazul Haider Rizvi, argued with the petitioner company that it was given a license of 15 years in 2010 for operating a cable channel named Filmazia. He argued that under the license, Filmazia was only allowed to have 10% of foreign content in its broadcasting, including Indian. He said that the channel became gradually popular. However, he said that 10% of foreign content was allowed but PEMRA banned all Indian content on cable channels in Pakistan.

He said that without any prior reason given by PEMRA, it made the investment in the business of media unviable for the company. And the company had spent a lot of money buying Indian content and once the Indian content was not allowed to be aired, it had a serious impact on the company’s revenues. The country as per the advocate was indulging in selective patriotism as Indian movies were already screened in the country.

After hearing the argument from the company’s advocate, Lahore High Court Chief Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah issued notices to PEMRA and Federal Government. He wanted to sought out replies about the justification of the impugned circular, especially when there was no ban on Indian movies being aired in the country. The notice was received by counsel for PEMRA and the government representative in the court. The case hearing has been adjourned till 8th Feb 2017.

No Pakistani Content in India

India has always found excuses of not airing Pakistani content in its country. Pakistan, on the other hand, has always been more lenient. This kind of one-sided approach makes it difficult for our own film fraternity and actors to compete with big budget movies and dramas. Government must provide a level playing field to Pakistani artists, cinemas and dramas so that our actors and actress do not find the urge to go to India and work.

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