The Islamabad High Court (IHC) issued a contempt of court notice to the chairman of the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) on Monday in response to a petition alleging that the court’s May 25 decision to restore ARY News to its previous number had not been followed.
The IHC bench heard ARY Communications’ contempt petition against PEMRA regarding the closure of ARY News and its relegation to lower numbers on the TV channel sequence.
The case was considered by a single bench of the IHC, led by Chief Justice Athar Minallah, who issued a notice to PEMRA’s chief in a contempt case.
ARY Communications counsel Shoaib Razzak informed the court that Pemra’s illegal acts against ARY News have continued despite explicit instructions from IHC to restore the news channel to its previous number and prohibit the authority from suspending transmission.
ARY NEWS HAS BEEN SUSPENDED, AND THE SENATE IS INQUIRING ABOUT THEIR POSITION ON TV CHANNELS.
The court postponed the case’s next hearing until June 16 and ordered the Pemra chief to provide a response at the next hearing.
The Senate wants to know more about the situation of television stations.
On June 1, the Senate Standing Committee on Information and Broadcasting requested information from the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) on TV channels’ positions on the problem made by ARY News regarding its transmission being blocked.
The meeting, which was attended by the Secretary of Information and Broadcasting, PEMRA officials, and media, was headed by Senate committee chairman Faisal Javed Khan.
The panel was also informed of the actions taken against leading journalists and anchors, while the committee inquired about the situation of television networks with the watchdog.
Meanwhile, Chairman PEMRA instructed Faisal Javed to contact Khalid Arain and inquire if the regulatory authority had requested that the channel be closed. “If you can open the channel, you can close it too,” the Senator replied.