In the past, political parties used to buy loyalties of individual journalists by cash payments or giving them lucrative jobs. Now they buy entire media groups, in both the print and electronic mediums. This is done through giving lucrative appointments in government organisations and in advisory roles. Those that are given these appointments are not qualified for the job and cause irreparable damage to the organisations they work in, and the country. In another case an NGO run by a media group, was given heavy funding by the Punjab government. Obviously there are no free lunches and media groups would favour these parties while claiming to be neutral.

All over the world journalists are bought and favours given by media houses to political parties with a sense of ‘quid pro quo’ but this has now gone overboard. In view of the proliferation of TV channels, PTV is no longer viewed except when it telecasts cricket matches. With the change in PCB hierarchy, PTV is not likely to bid for these matches in future. It would therefore be wise to privatize PTV and save the government massive wastage of funds.

FAYYAZ UR REHMAN,

Islamabad, June 8.