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TV Channels Directed To Invite Only ISPR Approved ‘Defence Analysts’

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The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has barred TV channels from inviting retired military officers not approved by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) as ‘defence analysts’ in talk shows on national security and defence.

The media watchdog directed all TV channels to seek prior clearance from the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) before inviting retired military officers on news and current affairs programmes “to solicit their views on matters of national security”.

PEMRA said that ‘certain quarters’ have observed that the retired military officials “are usually not fully conversant with the latest defence and security developments due to their service background and post-retirement time.” Moreover, the notification said that ‘defence analysts’ usually indulge in political debates which is felt ‘undesirable’.

“All news/current affairs TV channels are requested that retired armed forces officers may only be invited as Defence Analyst for discussion on military matters with prior clearance from ISPR,” the notification read.

PEMRA also urged TV channels to introduce the retired officers as solely ‘analysts’ if they are invited to speak on matters other than national security or defence. “However, procedure for clearance may be processed with ISPR as Defence Analyst,” the notification added, seeking strict compliance with the instruction by the TV channels.

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  1. Shakil Rai April 6, 2019

    Asserting their control of the narrative and restricting freedom of speech even further. They are holding media responsible for what retired military officers say on air. Why media outlets should be responsible for obtaining an NOC for former military officers. Instead it should be responsibility of the military and its former or current officers to decide among themselves.

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