Posts Tagged ‘Mir Shakil ur Rehman’

Anti Terrorism Court Issues Arrest Warrants Against Geo Personnel On Charges of Blasphemy

Friday, June 6th, 2014

Anti Terrorism Courts Rawalpindi

Journalists is Pakistan have been killed with impunity since long. Now the Anti-Terrorism Courts are finally taking notice of the media, but it is not to protect journalists, but to arrest them.

ATC judge Tariq Anwar Kasi on Thursday issued arrest warrants against Geo’s owner Mir Shakeelur Rehman, morning show host Dr Shaista Lodhi as well as actress Veena Malik and her husband Asad Bashir Khattak on charges of blasphemy.

This dangerous game against Geo is taking on an entirely new level, and threatens to destroy not just Jang Group, but what is left of journalism in Pakistan.

 

Tariq Butt crosses the line

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

The News (Jang Group)Yesterday’s issue of The News included a column by Tariq Butt that crossed the line between questionable judgment and irresponsible journalism. The column in question, “The demolition squad gets another ‘educated’ Awan”, is a vicious political hit piece and nothing more.

From the very introduction of the column, it is clear that the author has no intention of presenting a factual report, but is only filing a vicious attack.

Sardar Assef Ahmed Ali has found a role model, not someone to be proud of though, in the fake degree holder Babar Awan. Both are now the assigned demolition squad leaders to crush national institutions. One did the NAB, the other is after HEC.

Both these state organizations are designed to catch the thieves, fraudsters and cheats which for obvious reasons the present PPP government does not like or cannot afford. The demolition squad got its assignment directly from President Asif Ali Zardari to put these organisations to bed as they have become the main hurdle in the way of implementation of the government’s agenda of protecting the corrupt and the immoral.

It is not necessary to reproduce any more of the column. Suffice it to say that the entire piece is filled with accusations, conspiracies, rumours, and innuendo. What is entirely missing are facts, evidence, and reason.

Over the past week, The News has published contradictory conspiracy theories, multiple opinion columns as news reports, and even a vicious political attack that belongs in gutter politics, not on the pages of a respectable newspaper. As such, we have great concern about whether there are any professionals in charge at The News.

We hope that Mir Rahman, as Editor-in-Chief, has the decency to discipline his employees and requires Tariq Butt to either show solid evidence backing his claims or, if he cannot do such a thing, a public apology and retraction. The legitimacy of his newspaper as a source of “News” is quickly coming into question.

The Jang Group – how low the standards would fall?

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

The following was posted by Mr. Yousuf Nazar at his own blog, State of Pakistan, on Saturday, 10 April 2010. Mr. Nazar makes excellent observations about the increasingly poor so-called ‘reporting’ being published by The News (Jang Group).

I am getting quite fed up with the planted, biased, illiterate, and highly unprofessional so-called reporting by the The News International.  Its current owner Mir Shakil ur Rehman was not above cheating in the exams. More about this in a moment.

At one point of time, I was very negative about Asif Zardari, and still am, [read my article of Sep. 04, 2008] but whatever he is or his past, he is at least a known commodity. And to be honest, what the PPP government under President Zardari has achieved in political terms in just two years, Zia and Musharraf could not achieve in the twenty two years, these murderers and traitors ruled the country. Zia killed ZAB and Musharraf killed Akbar Bugti. Whatever ZAB and Bugti’s wrongs might have been, every one deserves a fair trial. Both Zia and Musharraf violated the constitution and the law of the land with impunity and contempt. So it is not out of line to accuse them of murder and treason.

Now about the Jang Group. On Saturday, April 10, 2010, the News published a report by Ahmad Noorani that claimed, “a highly controversial clause regarding the judges’ appointment in the 18 Amendment bill has changed the whole scenario of lawyers’ politics with the government trying to gain their loyalties. According to the Law Ministry sources, sensing the lawyers’ reaction on the passage of the controversial clause of judges’ appointment, the law ministry has decided to launch a full-fledged campaign against the country’s independent judiciary. Credible sources confided to The News that senior officials of the ministry had been deputed for this purpose and they had been assigned to give cases to certain lawyers so that they feel obliged and sympathise with the government at an appropriate time.”

What kind of nonsense, unprofessional, planted and inspired reporting is this or for that matter reporting at all. Law Ministry sources, credible sources, reliable sources.. and so on! Another one was “lawyers plan to challenge the 18th amendment” without naming a single lawyer. This is not reporting. Name the sources or have the guts to say that it is your opinion. But then put it on opinion pages and stop publishing one-sided and inspired material as front page news items.

First of all, to term the clause regarding the judges’ appointment in the 18 Amendment bill as highly controversial is ludicrous, dishonest, and factually incorrect. The Amendment won an overwhelming majority and this particular clause was passed without any opposition, whatsoever, by the National Assembly. Would any one who is a journalist worth his salt and has any professional caliber, term this as “highly controversial” unless he is either very biased or is working on some agenda.

Such journalists should join politics and then they would be free and entitled to say whatever they fancy but as long as they profess to be journalists, they should learn to observe some professional standards. Or is that too much to expect. Maybe it is.

Specially from the Jang Group. This Group has played a special role in Pakistan’s history in promoting dictatorships, jingoism, sectarianism, ethnic conflicts, and in general keeping its readership in a world that can be described as xenophobic. Its role in projecting Jamaat-e-Islami in the 1970s, turning the newspaper into a pamphlet and printing highly inflammatory slogans [as a border] that provoked the language riots in Sindh (1972), barely six months after the dismemberment of Pakistan, remains one of the darkest chapters in Pakistani journalism.  Jamaat Islami Chief, Tufail Mohammed was an uncle of Zia ul Haq and an agent of the CIA as Mr. Bhutto documented in detail in his book, If I am Assassinated.

Jang Group’s TV channel has promoted people with dubious credentials like Aamir Liaqat Hussain who have fake degrees. GEO, on its website,  prides itself as the CNN of Pakistan, totally oblivious of the reality that in most countries outside the United States, CNN is considered to be a biased mouth piece of American establishment and is not exactly known for objectivity or independent reporting. GEO TV colloborates with the Voice of America, which is an official news arm of the government of the United States. Yet, it claims to be indpendent and objective.

Observing this lowly and sleazy standard of journalism, I have been reflecting on an evening in the distant past. I was preparing for my final exams for the B.Com in 1976 in Karachi. One evening, when I was studying, my door bell rang. When I went out, it was my friend Zain Ghazali, son of Commander Ghazali, a former manager of Pakistan’s cricket team. He asked me to come and sit in the car parked outside my house. As I got into the volkswagen, I saw a nice looking boy on the wheels. It was Mir Shakil ur Rehman. He was very excited as he had managed to get the Accounting paper “OUT”. So I asked what then was the problem?  “I don’t know how to solve it”, was the answer. I hope the readers get a picture.

I believe, Shakil has now moved to Dubai with his family and does not even live in Pakistan. I wonder if such people, who did not have the ability to even cheat in an exam and do not even live in Pakistan despite making so much money here, would have even bothered to provide some elementary training in journalism and its basic standards to the members of their staff. It seem not.