PM Nawaz praises media, urges stronger role

(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif while addressing the Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) on Saturday urged the media to play a stronger role in steering the nation out of the darkness of terrorism crisis.

Besides praising journalists for their input in improving the country's representation on the international front, the PM urged journalists to play an ethical as well as mature role and formulate a code of conduct.

He went on to say that he respected journalists who made efforts to protect democracy, law and constitution.

He criticised the role of media during the period of sit-ins while also questioning the motives of the instigator as well as the agenda of the attackers of the PTV building.

He added that the sit-ins also impacted the economy in a negative manner as well as caused postponement of important visits of foreign dignitaries to Pakistan.

The PM also said that media can criticise the government but should refrain from completely putting them down and in case of any issues the government can be approached for help where matters would be resolved together.

He went on to say that the media should extend its support to the government for implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) to eliminate terrorism and extremism and that it should put aside its ratings and business for two years to support the government and Parliament.

He further said that since the launch of the operation in Karachi in 2013, peace was returning and the government would not backtrack till the city was purged of lawlessness.

Deliberating on the government's plan to address energy crisis, the Prime Minister said the government has decided to allocate Rs100 billion each year under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) to generate 3600 megawatts of electricity through LNG by the year 2017.

He also committed to enhance the spending on the education sector from two to four percent of the GDP however adding that the government was facing a deficit of Rs200 billion in its revenue targets consequent to decrease in oil prices.

The PM said that in his telephonic conversation, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi informed about the upcoming visit of Indian foreign secretary adding that Pakistan would welcome the revival of bilateral dialogue.

Responding to a question, he said that foreign involvement in terrorism in Pakistan could not be ruled out as there were some apprehensions and in some instances there was evidence too.

Regarding the Baldia Town Factory blaze in Karachi, he said he had received a report on the matter and needed some more information adding that, however, justice would be served against whosoever is responsible and is associated with any political party.

The PM also announced Rs50 million for the endowment fund for journalists and also distributed lifetime achievement awards among the senior newsmen in recognition of their services.

The Peninsula

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