ISLAMABAD – Pakistan is currently facing various challenges and problems, and media, therefore, should play its due role to pull out the country from this difficult situation.

Dr Thomas Ditt, head of press and cultural section embassy of German, expressed these views while addressing a National Media Conference entitled “Dissecting Pakistani Media from a Free, Independent and Responsible Media (FRIM) Perspective” organised by Individualland Pakistan (IL-Pakistan) in the collaboration Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) here on Thursday.

He said that media is free and independent in Pakistan and, therefore, it plays its positive role. He also said that media is the fourth pillar of the state and it needs other pillar of states but there is dire need to establish a system to ensure check and balance also in media.

Raja Shafqat Khan Abbassi, Chairman Press Council of Pakistan (PCP), said that media in Pakistan is to a larger extent operating freely, which was not the situation almost a decade ago. The much-needed freedom not only resulted in the growth and development of media as an industry, but has also with the passage of time created a sense of responsibility not only among journalists but also among the citizens as well, he said.

He said that Pakistan media has played a vital role during the last 10 years in the country, especially for the development and restoration of democracy. He also urged journalists to perform their duties following the code of ethics and not to act like a judge.

Shafqat Abassi also commended the work of Individualland Pakistan in highlighting the consumer’s perspective, which was never thought of till a few years back. This concept has not only created an altogether different breed of journalists, but also a much aware citizenry or consumers of media, he said.

Gulmina Bilal Ahmad, executive director Individualland Pakistan, while addressing the participants during the inaugural session also stressed on the consumer’s perspective. She further added that an informed citizenry or consumer base promotes a sense of responsibility among journalists. The media is evolving and it is visible through the rise of social media that the future of communication and media will be a lot different than what it was 10 or 15 years ago.

Olaf Kellerhoff, resident representative Friedrich Naumann Foundation Pakistan, said that a free, independent and responsible media is important along with informed consumers. Both go hand in hand. He further added that Friedrich Naumann Foundation believes in individual freedom and responsibility and Individualland Pakistan is working for the promotion of both.

Participants in the conference have come from 15 different districts of Pakistan, which will result in experience sharing among journalists of different backgrounds and will promote better understanding among the journalistic community.