ISLAMABAD                      -            Special Assistant on Information and Broadcasting Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan has said that protective kits will be provided to journalists covering vulnerable areas such as quarantine centers.

During a video conference with the provincial Information Ministers on Wednesday, she said journalists are at the vanguard in the fight against coronavirus and steps are being taken to ensure their safety and health.

The Special Assistant said that COVID-19 Care for Media app is also being launched to help those journalists affected by the virus.

She said that newspapers hawkers will also be registered in Ehsaas Emergency Cash program as their sales have also been affected due to the outbreak of coronavirus.

The Special Assistant urged the provincial governments to clear on war footing the pending payments of the media. She added that responsibility rests with the media to avoid creating panic regarding the current situation. She stressed that success stories of those recovering from the pandemic should also been given coverage to offset the environment of fear and anxiety.

Earlier, in tweets, the SAPM said that using this app, the affected journalists and their families could register themselves.

Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said that the Prime Minister Imran Khan attached high priority to the safety of journalists and media workers and this app was being launched on his instructions.

She said that this app would provide timely help to the affected media workers and would be helpful in the assessment of exact number of affected persons.

SAPM thanked all provincial Information Ministers over their cooperation and for attending the video conferences regularly.

She stressed that there is a need to provide kits to provinces to distribute among journalists as soon as possible, adding that the provincial government has summoned a meeting regarding dues of Journalists.

Sindh Information Minister Nasir Hussain Shah appreciated the federal government over launch of Media App. He said Sindh government will contribute in Information Ministry’s Rs 50 million fund. Information Minister AJK Mushtaq Minhas said people should also be given awareness about coronavirus through entertainment channels.