Pakistan bans BBC Urdu service news bulletins in the country over FM

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has banned broadcast of BBC Urdu News bulletins over 24 partner FM stations of the BBC.

BBC World Service has been ordered to cease the broadcasting of BBC Urdu service’s news bulletins on 24 out of its 34 FM partner stations in Pakistan. PERMA has mentioned that the decision has been relayed to the broadcaster as per the orders from the government.

The BBC has showed concerns over the action and believes that the 24 FM partner stations completed all the required paperwork for PEMRA last October and calls on the Pakistan authorities to allow the stations to resume BBC Urdu news bulletins so that audiences in Pakistan can have access to the BBC’s impartial and editorially independent news.

In a statement released by the Company, BBC says, “The BBC is concerned that the millions of radio listeners in Pakistan who turn to the BBC for unbiased and objective news and information will be the most affected by this decision.”

The BBC will monitor the situation closely and continue to support its partners in getting BBC programmes back on air. The broadcasts were earlier banned by Pakistan’s television and radio regulator in 2007, but were re-allowed in 2008.

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