New Delhi, April 7: Pakistan Geo Television network—Geo TV has said that it has been forced to go off air in most parts of the country, a news agency ANI reported. It has been done on the orders of the military as it flexes its authority over civilian institutions, the report further states.
As per the Newyork Times report, chief executive of the GEO Television network, Mir Ibrahim Rahman, said, “We are off the air in 80 percent of the country.”
Meanwhile, according to ANI, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal clarified that the incumbent government did not order the suspension of the channel. Also, he did not explain why the channel faces a blackout across the country.
The blackout is because of channel’s coverage on Pakistan’s placement on a terrorism financing watch list this year, as reported by the Times of India.
In the first week of March, the channel has tweeted on its microblogging site, saying, “If viewers/readers cannot watch Geo News on their TV screens or if our channels have somehow been shifted from their original numbers, or if they are deprived of receiving their copies of Daily Jang or/and The News, they can lodge complaints at telephone number: 021-32271133.”
And again on April 1, the channel re-tweeted, “If you cannot see Geo News on your television screens or if our channels have somehow been shifted from their original number, contact us. Register your complaints (Texts Only) through WhatsApp or SMS on the numbers given below: 0312-8802222 | 0332-2197855 | 0337- 3160380.”
Three years ago also the channel had gone off air for 15 days and was fined £60,000 for defaming the head of the military’s Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI), General Zaheer-ul-Islam.
(With agency inputs)