Amir Liaquat, a television host and politician whose name is more synonymous with controversies than with politics, has found himself in hot water with PEMRA again. The preacher-turned-television host has managed to irk the ire of PEMRA again and gotten himself banned for three months.

The programmes in contention this time are segments of Amir Liaquat’s shows “Ramzan Main Bol” and “Aisa Nahi Chalay Ga”. The segments include Liaquat taking a call, in which a controversial question relating to the religious sects was asked at which he bashed the caller while the content was aired live and un-edited. Pemra notes that Liaquat “merely for creating sensation and in order to achieve maximum rating”, created “unwarranted drama on the basis of religion and hurt the sentiments of different sects and public at large”, and has held him in violation of Section 20(b), (c) (f) of Pemra Ordinance 2002.

This is not the first time that Amir Liaquat has generated controversy over spreading inflammatory speech and discord among religious sects and divisions. In January 2017, PEMRA banned an Amir Liaquat programme after he, without any proof or grounds, accused civil society activists and bloggers of blasphemy — an allegation which can have deadly consequences. He has been banned or censured many times since 2011, for reasons which include handing out baseless deadly fatwas on treason, distastefully mocking a teenage suicide victim and commending murder against a minority community.

The above examples show that banning Liaquat has not prevented him from discordant speech. Considering that he is a repeat offender on sensitive religious matters, perhaps a more stringent action is in order. Moreover, since Liaquat is a recently elevated member of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf (PTI) - the party needs to be questioned too on whether it condones the television host’s disruptive and damaging actions.