KARACHI (APP) - The Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) will formulate its code of conduct and self-regulate it among its stakeholders. This was decided at a meeting of PBA office-bearers with Federal Information Minister, Ms Sherry Rehman, here on Thursday. The meeting, held at the office of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA-Sindh Region) was attended, besides PBA office-bearers, by Federal Information Secretary, Ashfaq Ahmed Gondal, and Chairman PEMRA Mushtaq Malik. Talking to mediamen, the Information Minister said in every democratic country there is a code of conduct and she would like that friends in media should also come up with such an arrangement. She said that media's approach in this regard has been very positive and PBA has agreed to come up with a code of conduct for itself. Ms Sherry Rehman praised the responsible role being played by the media. She said in the meeting the PBA representatives said that "we are a mature industry and would come up with our own code of conduct as we are a stakeholder in the democratic process". The Minister said that "she was happy that PBA would formulate its own code of conduct soon and in consultation with them, we would move forward in this respect". She said that government has also operated in the political sphere in the same manner. Ms Sherry Rehman told the media that it was a positive meeting with PBA. There was a discussion on the code of conduct as well as on problems of the media industry. She appreciated that media realises the challenges faced by the country and promised cooperation. The Minister said "we also reiterated the resolve that PPP Govt would not impose any code of conduct and would request that like a mature media and industry, an atmosphere of self-regulation be created. We believe in good ties with the media." She pointed out that more than 60 channels are operating at present and said there should be a process of consultation to strengthen the institutions. Such an approach, Ms Sherry Rehman added, would also promote democratic values. The Minister said the government also intends to undertake steps for the safety of working journalists and there be a mechanism for the safety of especially the cameramen and reporters in the conflict zone reporting. Replying to a question, she said that no channel has been shut by the Government. Ms Sherry Rehman said that cable operators is a separate industry and there will be discussion on this in the next meeting. The cable operators should neither run a channel nor they should shut any. This industry, she added, needed to be regulated and that its problems would also be discussed. The Minister said "we desire a sustained and strengthened relationship with PBA and should work in coordination". To a question, she said that in the past seven months the role and organisational and institutional framework of PEMRA has changed as compared to the past and PEMRA is now adopting a democratic working culture. Ms Sherry Rehman said that she has asked PEMRA to look into the violations committed by cable operators. On the one hand they have to be provided protection so that there be no excesses against them but on the other they should not take the law or the media policy into their hand. Replying to another question, she pointed out that soon after coming into power, the government repealed the anti-media laws enforced by the previous government. She said "we have to move forward to establish a democratic culture. The institutions have to be strengthened". The Minister said that PPP government has fulfilled its commitments especially those pertaining to the media. She said that "our role is now of a facilitator as well as a regulator. There are regulators in every country. However, we do not believe in suppression of freedom of expression". With reference to the prevailing situation, Ms Sherry Rehman said that media in Pakistan has played a responsible role.