APP71-06 ISLAMABAD: April 06 – Minister of State for IB and NH Marriyum Aurangzeb addressing a ceremony held in connection with Journalists Martyrs Day. APP

ISLAMABAD, April 6 (APP): The government had an abiding
commitment to provide an enabling and secure environment to the
journalists so that they could perform their duties as
per professional ethos.
In this regard, the
government would promulgate a new law designed to ensure security,
safety and welfare of the journalists, Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Marriyum Aurangzeb stated on the
occasion of `Martyred Journalists Day, being observed throughout the
country under the auspices of the Federal Union of Journalists said.
Congratulating and appreciating the PFUJ for observing the
day, the minister said it was not only a day to pay tributes
to the brave men of the media who embraced martyrdom in the
pursuit of ferreting out truth and upholding the sanctity and dignity
of the profession of journalism but also an occasion to renew
the pledge that they would never be forgotten.
Marriyum elaborated that democracy and journalism were
both arduous paths to traverse as they tested the temperament and
courage of its followers at every step of the voyage.
The media men particularly have to work under very
stressful environment and also tolerate the criticism of
their detractors but they continue their search for truth unruffled
by the difficulties. The minister observed that the media had won its freedom due to the sacrifices of the brave professionals who laid
down their lives but did not compromise on the sanctity of
their profession.
She said that politics and journalism shared common goals
which could be achieved through cooperation, dedication and
hard work. She said that democracy and media had complementary
roles and were source of strength for each other.
The weakness of one could have negative repercussions for
the other, she added.
Later addressing an event organized by the PFUJ to pay
tributes to the martyrs of journalism, the minister said that under the
prevailing circumstances the journalists needed a law to ensure their
She said that the laws enacted by the previous governments
for the protection of journalists had many lacunas which would be removed
in the `Journalist Welfare and Protection Bill’ which the government was
contemplating to enact.
The minister revealed that a debate on the proposed bill
would be held at the National Press Club Islamabad on Monday.
The state minister said that any attack on the media was an
attack on Pakistan. The media, she said, has played a sterling
role in strengthening democracy and democratic institutions.
She paid rich tributes to the journalists who sacrificed
their lives in the line of duty and also eulogized the contribution
made by Hamid Mir in upholding independence of media and
freedom of expression.