TV artists protest against Turkish, Spanish soaps
* Samina Ahmad, Usman Peerzada, Firdos Jamal, Maria Wasti, Ghulam Muhiuddin, Shaukat Ali, Sardar Kamran, Irfan Mughal, Rashid Mahmood lead protest
By Aliya Mirza
LAHORE: TV artists, producers, directors and writers on Tuesday held a protest demonstration against foreign dramas and soaps at the Lahore Press Club.
TV artists, including Samina Ahmad, Usman Peerzada, Firdos Jamal, Maria Wasti, Ghulam Muhiuddin, Shaukat Ali, Sardar Kamran, Irfan Mughal and Rashid Mahmood led the protest.
They said, “By dubbing Spanish and Turkish soaps in Urdu and bringing them into Pakistan we are competing our own drama industry and destroying it.”
Dozens of people joined them and shouted slogans against PEMRA. They said, “These dramas are affecting our drama industry economically. We are destroying our society ourselves by showing culture of others in our country.”
They demanded that the government take strict action against this, adding that these dramas are being aired during prime time, which is totally in violation of PEMRA rules. They said further the government should immediately ban foreign content, especially dramas.
Talking to Daily Times, Samina Ahmad said, “The Turkish soaps are not only a threat to the country’s drama industry but also to our culture.”
She said, “Bringing foreign dubbed content is cheating and injustice with our own Urdu drama industry. If things go like this then the day is not so far when our own Pakistani actors will be jobless.”
Every country has its standard rules. According to these rules no foreign content could be shown prime time, but in Pakistan there are no such rules, Samina added.
“We had faced Indian dramas for a pretty long time and have not got rid of that properly yet but another foreign content had been brought here to compete our own local production and to destroy Pakistani industry,” Samina further said.
Actor Asif Raza Meer said that the foreign content, especially the dramas whether Indian, Turkish or Spanish should be totally banned. He said, “Every country has made rules to protect its own industry, films and dramas, but in our country there are no such rules. PEMRA-made rules need to be revised. The rule that says 10 percent of foreign content can be aired in Pakistan is not being implemented,” Meer added.
Another drama actor Faisal Rehman said such serials are being brought to Pakistan because they are cheap. He said, “If we talk about our film industry everyone knows that it is almost finished and if Indian or any foreign movie is being screened here in Pakistan it is not wrong because our film industry does not exist. On the other hand destroying our own flourished drama industry is simply unbelievable.”