BHURBAN: President Mamnoon Hussain on Sunday urged media to continue its responsibility of dealing effectively with terrorism and extremism besides promoting peace ventures in the region.
Addressing the participants of a conference ‘Media and Extremist Narrative’ held under the auspices of South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA), he cautioned the media to remain vigilant against any misuse of its freedom.
“Pakistan is a democratic country and its people believe in rule of law and peaceful struggle for the attainment of set ideals. Founder of Pakistan Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a thorough democratic person who believed in such conviction,” he said, adding that through Quaid’s democratic, legal and peaceful movement, Pakistan came into being.
The president regretted that certain elements in society had been misusing religion for their mundane interests.
“There is no clash of religions in our country; neither our religion allows it nor the constitution,” he said. “Let us together, we should discourage such attempts which are cause of unrest and intolerance in society.”
Expressing his optimism, the president said that the media would continue playing its role in foiling the nefarious designs of terrorists and discouraging the attempts of creating disharmony and misunderstandings in society.
The present government firmly believes in freedom of media and people’s right to information as no society could achieve progress without giving people the right to speak and information, Mamnoon said.
He said that establishment of a responsible government and effective mechanisms for transparency and accountability were linked with responsible role of free and independent media.
The president said that media was not only the protector of democracy but also of the public interests and hoped that Pakistani media would continue playing its role for national progress realising the changing trends of the time.
The president expressed satisfaction that after a long time, peaceful and smooth democratic transition had taken place in the country. He said the present government had a number of issues to face after coming into power and with determination, it had been heading for durable solutions to these challenges.
He referred to the development activities of brotherly country Turkey where the inflation rate had been brought down to the single digit. He said the government was undertaking power projects like Gaddani, Karachi Civil Nuclear Power Plant, Thar Coal and Dasu Dam and soon the people of the country would be able to reap the benefits of such development projects.
The president said SAFMA had held its sixth conference at a time when the country and its people were confronted by terrorism, and viewed that such gatherings would provide the newsmen and intellectuals a platform to express their views on the issue.
He said that Pakistan had rendered numerous sacrifices in its fight against extremism and terrorism that claimed lives of thousands of soldiers, security personnel and civilians besides badly damaging the national economy.
He said that despite all this Pakistan remained committed and the government had the resolve to take this anti-terror fight to its logical end as per public aspirations.
“The government is determined to make Pakistan a secure state. We want to establish a durable peace in the region, so that the respective governments may concentrate on welfare of their people,” the president said.
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