Gagging any form of human expression is tantamount to violation of the Constitution and the fundamental human rights, and the forced closure of Geo Super transmissions is not less than suppressing the sentiments and emotions of an entire nation by a so-called democratic government.
This was the general consensus of various artistes while they recorded their response to the ban imposed by Pemra on Geo Super, the most loved sports channel in the country on Friday.
Sohail Khan, a renowned producer and highly experienced personality in the film industry, was quite disturbed over gagging of the most favorite sports channel in Pakistan. Khan said, It is the right of the people to have access to information and entertainment. The right is guaranteed by the Constitution, the human rights charter and the law of the land. Every law is made for the protection, convenience and betterment of the people. Moreover, in a democratic setup, it becomes vital to keep the interest of the people on top priority.
The ban on Geo Super without any legal or constitutional reason is simply tantamount to depriving the people of Pakistan of their fundamental right of freedom of expression and enjoyment, he said. Imposing a ban on any channel in a democracy was like a nightmare, he added.
Arif Lohar, a world renowned pop singer and symbol of Pakistani folk culture, said: The print and electronic media is vital to keep the culture and traditions of a country alive and promote them in and outside the country. It s the media which has introduced our rich and colorful historic and cultural assets and traditions to the world. Closure of any form of expression, be it print or electronic, is not only a blatant violation of democratic norms but also a direct insult to the masses. Geo Super provides healthy information on sports which is a very positive, healthy and progressive element in the life of any nation. Thus, imposing the ban of Geo Super is certainly not a positive step, asking the government to review its decision to ban the sports channel.
Arif Khan, owner of Gulistan Cinema, Lahore, was of the view that everyone had freedom of choice and expression. It is up to people whether or not they like a TV channel, he said, adding that the closure of Geo Super was nothing but a violation of the people s basic human rights. Geo Super is doing a great job and people love it. Therefore, Pemra has no right to close it down by setting aside wishes of the people, he said.