Plan afoot to revive PTV

ISLAMABAD, Feb 04 (APP): Minister for Information and Broadcasting Syed Shibli Faraz on Thursday informed the Senate that the government has prepared a comprehensive plan to revive Pakistan Television’s past glory to make it a financially viable institution.

Replying to various questions during Question Hour, the minister said that unfortunately PTV was witnessing decline for the last many years. Like other institution, PTV was also degenerated by the past governments, he added.

He said political inductions were made in the PTV in the past. He said purchased programmes were telecast in the past rather than their own production in the studios at different centers of PTV.

However, he said in-house production was again being started to stand the organization on its feet. The minister said due to financial constraint, equipment could not be replaced since 1974.

He said currently there were three non-functional studios at different Centers of PTV Corporation including PTV News Center Islamabad, PTV Home Peshawar and PTV Home Center Quetta due to shortage of equipment.

The minister said it was not the fact that a number of studios of PTVC were only producing News/Current Affairs Programmes at present. Studios of PTV Home Centers at Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi, Quetta and Peshawar were producing social/entertainment programes for PTV Home, PTV National and PTV Bolan Channels. PTV News and Current Affairs programes, he added.

Shibli Faraz said PTV was paying monthly pension to its all retired employees on regular basis since their retirement in time. The pension payments to all retired employees never delayed even for one day, he added.

As far as, the payment of commutation / retirement dues was concerned, he said that PTV was in serious financial crunch since last few years due to which the payment of commutation had not been made to retired employees in time since March 2018.

The minister said utmost efforts were being made to arrange funds with the help of Government of Pakistan to clear the remaining outstanding amount of commutation.

Further, he said, an amount of Rs.25 million was paid every month towards outstanding commutation to pensioners. PTV Corporation was maintaining pension account separately in a proper manner as per Corporation’s requirements, he added.

He said with the extensive efforts of management, PTV Pension Fund Trust had been registered, new bank accounts had been opened and registration with FBR was under process after which the Pension Fund Trust would become fully operational.

In this regard, a case for grant of seed money had already been forwarded to Government of Pakistan, he said.