The Pakistani government on Saturday lifted a ban on television channels to refrain from broadcasting or rebroadcasting press conferences of former Prime Minister Imran Khan, reported the Dawn.
The ban was imposed on Saturday by the Pakistan Electronic Media and Regulatory Authority. The electronic media watchdog said that airing of such content was likely to create hatred among citizens, is prejudicial to maintenance of law and order, likely to disturb public peace and endanger national security, reported The Express Tribune.
Pakistan Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif ordered the media regulatory authority to ensure the continued implementation of legal requirements enshrined under Article 19 (freedom of speech) of the Constitution.
“The prime minister has established a new tradition by ending the bitter traditions of Imran Khan’s era,” Aurangzeb said, reported the Dawn. She added that the government did not believe in what Khan did with former opposition leaders and politicians during his four years in power.
In 2020, when Khan was the country’s prime minister, the Pakistan Electronic Media and Regulatory Authority had barred channels from airing speeches, interviews and public addresses by absconders and proclaimed offenders, a directive aimed at Pakistan Muslim League (N) leader Nawaz Sharif.
In a notice issued on Saturday, the regulatory authority said that Khan during his speeches had “made aspersions against the state institutions by levelling baseless allegations for orchestrating an assassination plan”, reported Geo News.
On Thursday, Khan was shot in the leg after an unidentified assailant fired multiple bullets at him during a rally in Wazirabad.
Soon after the attack, the cricketer-turned-politician blamed Shehbaz Sharif, Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and a senior general of the Pakistan army for attempting to assassinate him, reported the Dawn. Khan demanded they immediately resign to ensure a fair investigation into the shooting.