Long before the introduction of television in Pakistan, ‘Radio Pakistan’ use to be the source of information. It would advise the public to follow traffic rules, refrain from honking, and avoid talking loudly, as well as keeping the neighbourhood clean. I often wonder why PTV and other privately own channels do not help informing citizens in creating a better society. 

TV channels today have a larger following than Radio Pakistan ever did – including the time when Bangladesh was a part of Pakistan. But today no TV channels focus on what I consider is their national duty. Yes, they should inform people of national and international affairs, but they also need to mould public behaviour – by providing guidelines and civic advice. 

Traffic rules are constantly violated throughout the country, but the situation in Karachi is even worse. People do not seem to be aware of the law. A letter in this section had said ‘the concept of right and wrong ceases to exist, one way streets have become two way, and people drive on the wrong tracks without thinking of the severe consequences’. The police do not care. For a populated city like Karachi, there needs to be more policemen than there are. But the violation of traffic rules, is not something the police can even solve. It’s a problem which only the public can fix. 

I think networks can ask their hosts to speak on traffic problems and educate the public on how violating rules is immoral and wrong. Hence it’s not the police but TV hosts and society leaders who can tell people to drive within lanes, show respect to other drivers and help with pedestrians crossing roads. Similarly it should not be hard for channels to spare a few minutes on talking about the importance of punctuality, avoiding litter and keeping the environment clean. Instead of reporting ‘breaking news’ every minute, this can be done. It is vital to educate the youth, who will help in creating a better Pakistan. 


Karachi, July 3.