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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

ARY comes under fire for blurring Imran Khan’s picture in IMF-PTI meeting

ARY is getting heavily criticized on social media for blurring Imran Khan. #ShameonAry and #boycottARY are trending on top of Twitter in Pakistan.

One of Pakistan’s top news channels, ARY is facing intense backlash for blurring PTI Chairman and former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s picture in a news story for PTI and IMF meeting.

According to the details, file footage shown on the channel blurred Imran Khan, while the picture of the IMF representative and Shah Mehmood Qureshi was crystal clear.

Pertinent to mention that Pakistan’s media regulator PEMRA had sent out a directive to Pakistan’s news channels. After mentioning the events of 9 May, the directive reminds media channels that they must refrain from providing airtime to individuals who propagate hate speech.

While the directive did not mention the name of Imran Khan, there is “an unannounced ban” on telecasting the political activities and speeches of PTI Chairman Imran Khan.

Read more: PTI accuses media of twisting Imran Khan’s words in interview with FT

PEMRA had placed several media bans on Imran Khan throughout the last year, but ARY had refused to comply and provided coverage to the former prime minister, resulting in the suspension of its transmission.

This time around, it seems that ARY has buckled under PEMRA’s pressure as it blurs out Imran Khan. It is getting heavily criticized for it on social media. Right now, #ShameonAry and #boycottARY are trending on top of Twitter in Pakistan.

Amid the backlash, PTI leader Dr Shahbaz Gill refrained from criticizing ARY. He also alleged that ARY is being forced to blur out Imran Khan.

Read more: Nation condemns suspension of ARY News transmission

IMF meets Imran Khan

IMF resident representative for Pakistan Esther Perez Ruiz visited Zaman Park for meeting his party chief, Imran Khan, while IMF mission chief for Pakistan Nathan Porter joined virtually from Washington.

The PTI team included him, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Shaukat Tarin, Omar Ayub Khan, Sania Nishtar, Shibli Faraz, Taimur Jhagra, and Muzammil Aslam.

The meeting lasted for more than an hour, during which discussions took place around the staff-level agreement that IMF has reached with the Government of Pakistan for a nine-month $3 billion standby arrangement.