IFJ and PFUJ condemn closure of int’l channel Indus News

KARACHI: Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) have condemned the closure of International Channel Indus News putting hundreds of media workers under financial stress.

The IFJ maintained: “The IFJ is concerned by the pattern of job losses emerging from within the Pakistani media-sphere and the ongoing impact of closures on media worker’s livelihoods. The IFJ condemns the manipulation of media ownership for personal gain.” The PFUJ, while announcing that it will stage country-wide protests on Thursday (16th of September, 2021) urged PEMRA and other the relevant authorities to take necessary legal action against the Indus News management: “Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has strongly condemned the closure of Indus News and termed it financial murder of the media workers.”

According to details Indus News was shutdown by Real Estate Tycoon Malik Riaz Hussain’s administration on 14th September. It is the second Pakistani media house owned by the him that called it a day in a period of 2 years. On 14th day of September Indus News employees were alerted  by its management via an email apropos the temporary closure of Indus News citing “unavoidable legal and technical issues”. The channel, owned by billionaire Malik Riaz Hussain, was launched in late 2018.

The management of Indus News, according to the email sent its staff, guarantees that all employees will resume work once the issues identified by management have been addressed. The email indicates the closure will last for a period of two months, within which staff will receive a “half month salary”. In April 2020, another media outlet owned by Hussain, AAP News, ceased operations after Hussain owned the outlet for a year. AAP News’ administration informed employees by email that due to legal and technical issues, the Urdu broadcaster would close immediately, leaving hundreds of journalists and media workers jobless.

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M M Alam

M. M. Alam is a Pakistan-based working journalist since 1981. Karachi University faculty gold medalist Alam began his career four decades ago by writing for Dawn, Pakistan’s highest circulating English daily. He has worked for region’s leading publications, global aviation periodicals including Rotors (of USA) and vetted New York Times as permanent employee of daily Express Tribune. Alam regularly covers international aviation and defense-related events including Salon Du Bourget (France), Farnborough (United Kingdom), Dubai (UAE). Alam has reported thousands of events and interviewed hundreds of people in Pakistan, UAE, EU, UK and USA. Being Francophone Alam also coordinates with a number of French publications.