Pakistan more safe than 2013: Pervaiz

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ISLAMABAD, Nov 26 (APP): Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Senator Pervaiz Rashid Thursday said Pakistan today was far more safe than in 2013 when the present democratic government came to power.
Speaking in the Senate Standing Committee on Information,Broadcasting and National Heritage here, he said the Zarb-e-Azb and Karachi operations were launched to root out the scourge of terrorism  from the country. Now a dignitary from Pakistan visits Washington, London, Tokyo, Berlin, Moscow etc or vice versa, a sentence appreciating
Pakistan’s role and sacrifices in global efforts against terrorism
and extremism forms part of the joint statement, the minister added.
He said the world not only appreciated Pakistan but also
acknowledged its gains and achievements in the war against terror,
as a result of which both the world and Pakistan were more safe.
He said the threat to the lives of journalists and media houses
was linked to the issue of terrorism. However, as a result of the
Zarb-e-Azb and Karachi operations things were improving now, he added.
He said it was the government’s responsibility to provide
protection and security to all its citizens, including the
journalists.
The present government, he said, had kept the issue of terrorism
on top of its agenda and the Prime Minister’s commitment to the issue
was manifested on daily basis.
About the provision of security to journalists, he said the
Prime Minister had constituted a committee headed by Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan, which had held five meetings so far and
recommended steps which were being implemented.
On the committee’s recommendations, he said geo-fencing of all
the media houses in the Federal Capital had been done and details
about their locations were provided to the law enforcement agencies.
Moreover, the presence of law enforcement personnel had been ensured
in the vicinity of media houses.
He said a panic button system had also been installed in
media houses. In case of any suspicious activity witnessed near their offices, media persons could push the button to call police.
Similarly, he said, an emergency telephone number had also been
provided to journalists and media houses on which they could call in
case of any emergency.
He said the provincial governments had also been approached
and they too had provided these facilities to journalists and media
houses in their respective capitals. Same facilities were now
being expanded to other cities also, he added.
About the Right to Information Bill, he said its draft was
included on the agenda of the cabinet twice, but it could not be taken
up due to heavy agenda. Now he had discussed the issue with the Prime Minister for its early approval, he added.