PESHAWAR - Amid the tall claims of transparency, restraint, democracy, and safeguarding freedom of press, the Chief Minister on Friday banned the entry of independent media men in the CMs Secretariat and Civil Secretariat Peshawar. The Chief Minister (CM) Ameer Haidar Khan Hoti was upset after news regarding sale of coveted posts and new jobs was reported in TheNation. His tolerance faded after coming to know that media is investigating his involvement in a big land scam. Similarly, Chief Secretary (CS) Jawed Iqbal, who was disturbed after publication of news of corruption, nepotism, and supporting American spies as well as Blackwater mercenaries, was quick to implement the decision without informing the inexperienced politician about the pros and cons of the controversial action. The CS had also lost patience with media after publication of news in TheNation regarding refusal of British High Commission officials to meet him in Peshawar over 'some important matters. On Friday, he summoned the in-charge of security and issued verbal orders to ban the entry of reporters in the Civil Secretariat with immediate effect. Upon refusal, insiders said, he threatened the DSP Secretariat of dire consequences. Soon the CS won the compliance of his orders by the reluctant security officials. An official of the secretariat, when contacted over phone, said that the development proves that the government lacks the quality of grace, appropriateness and restraint. Vain and empty boasting will lead them nowhere, he quickly added. The government speaks about it in a very positive way but they have been overpowered with too much pride and self-indulgence was the reaction of another official who was weary of increasing corruption in the province. Newspapers are full of news against police but we have never banned anyones entry in Central Police Office or the Police Lines building, said a top police official. Governments pressure tactics and victimisation will never push reporters to compromise on press freedom, a senior official who is presently OSD said. Yet another official who has access to private information saw American influence behind the decision, as they want to hide their increasing involvement with government functionaries. However, private secretary to the CM Shah Jahan said that the decision was result of news published against the government. No one would faced ban if negative news werent published, he said. Former CM and leader of the opposition in provincial assembly Akram Khan Durrani condemned any restrictions on the press and news channels. Harassment of media persons and the threats being issued to them by government functionaries would not be tolerated, he said. He said that journalists were free during the JUI-F led government and the present government should be thankful to journalists if their weaknesses are exposed. He said ANP is working against its own tall claims and vowed to raise this issue in the assembly session. We dont expect any good from the government but they should not slap restrictions, he said. It may be noted that the entry of media has not been banned altogether in the secretariat and those who are liked for their 'positive mindset are still welcomed there.