ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf on Tuesday stressed the need for media’s "more responsible role" in the country and said that the approach should be coherent with the national interests.

Talking to a delegation of All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) led by its President Sarmad Ali at the PM House here, the Prime Minister said that the media must fulfil the ingredients of research, thorough investigations and factual reporting.

He urged upon the national media to present the soft and peace-loving image of Pakistan so as to counter the negative propaganda at the international level.

He said that the foreign media eagerly highlighted the local news reports that carried the content against Pakistan.

"Whatever pen-picture you draw about your country, it would have a far-reaching impact," Raja Pervaiz told the delegation comprising leading newspaper owners.

Prime Minister said the criticism by media was significant and could be positively taken as a guideline.

He said written words are more powerful than verbal ones and ,added, that a published article, a news and an editorial could be quoted as reference.

Raja Pervaiz said the next few months were very important as a democratic and civilian Parliament was nearing completion of its tenure for the first time in the country's history.

He said continuity of democracy was vital for speedy progress.

He hoped that in the forthcoming general elections, the media would play a constructive role in pinpointing the shortcomings and giving a positive direction to the national politics.  

Raja Pervaiz lauded the long struggle of media in attaining its position as a powerful organ of the State. He said it was rightly being said as a fourth pillar of the State due to its significance.

He said Pakistani culture is rooted in the traditions of safeguarding human rights, protecting the rights of women and caring for each other.

He said untoward incidents happen in all societies and mentioned the recent shooting at a school in the United States, in which several children were killed. He said ,however, their local media reported the happening with totally different approach. 

The meeting was also attended by Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira and State Minister for Information Samsam Ali Bukhari.

The APNS delegation comprised APNS Senior Vice President Mehtab Khan, Secretary General Masood Hamid, Joint Secretary Imtinan Shahid, Finance Secretary Javed Mehr Shamsi and members of the Executive Council of the APNS.