Negative role of media in testing times

Negative role of media in testing times

Our media has created super hype over incidents of US helicopters assault in Abbottabad, Mehran naval base attack, Kharotabad incident in Quetta, killing of Sarfaraz Shah in Karachi at the hands of soldier of Sindh Rangers, and murder of journalist Saleem Shehzad. The wrath of media is focused on armed forces, particularly Army and ISI and it looks as if it has old scores to settle and is giving vent to its pent up resentment. It is not leaving any stone unturned to tarnish the high reputation and image of Army and ISI and its rancorous posturing is in harmony with biased foreign media which has a specific agenda.

In case of US SEALs raid on OBL’s compound, instead of putting USA to shame for stabbing a close ally in the back, our media pointed all its guns on DGISI and wanted his resignation. Again when Mehran incident occurred, which was not possible without in-house and external support, our media blasted the naval chief and intelligence agencies. Murder of Shehzad was pinned on ISI to give strength to unsubstantiated allegation made by Adil Hasan, a researcher in Human Rights Asia Watch and notorious Asma Jahangir, a known Army basher. Kharotabad incident in which the FC soldiers killed five Chechens on the pointing of police was sensationalized by media simply because an Army officer was part of the shooting team. Karachi incident was also dramatized since Rangers were seen as part of Army not realizing that both FC and Rangers fall under the authority of Interior Minister and Army has no role in its employment.


Having a close look at the clip flashed hundreds of times on all TV channels to trigger sympathy wave for the deceased Sarfaraz, one wonders why didn’t he beseech the policemen who had caught him red handed with a pistol in his hand mugging a passerby, pulling his hair and beating him? What for was he pleading the Rangers on duty to whom he was handed over by police? Why was Sarfaraz not stepping backwards and not cowering in sheer fright rather than continuously moving forward towards the soldier pointing a loaded weapon towards him despite being repeatedly warned to stay back? He came so menacingly close to the gunman that he dipped the barrel of the gun downwards. What if was wearing a suicide jacket under his shirt and had pressed the button or had snatched the rifle and started firing indiscriminately resulting in death and injury of scores of people. Why didn’t the media highlight the criminal background of Sarfaraz who was a member of eight involved in hundreds of crimes?

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One Response to Negative role of media in testing times

  1. Najma Rehan says:

    The mass media has to promote Pakistan’s national interest, ideology and culture. The media must stand upright and speak the truth for the sake of establishing a just society and a democratic way of life. Only a balanced approach could help achieve the desired objectives and transform the media into a meaningful social institution. Hopefully, all those connected with the mass media in some capacity do realise that wrong assumptions lead to incorrect, illogical conclusions and oversimplification of views when it comes to analysing issues, solving problems, and resolving crises. From the viewpoint of the power and influence of the media (press, radio and television) in world politics, crises and conflicts, there is a need to consider the issue of moral panic, biases, media representation and the need to make media contents and presentation balanced and objective. Moral panic is some exaggerated or imaginary threat to society stirred up by exaggerated speculation and sensationalized reporting in the mass media.
    In Pakistan some media groups must review their policies, mere criticism for the sake of fame, damages national interests. Media must adopt a balance role, there is difference between trial and accountability.

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