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National media misreported the cabinet meeting:Spokesman

Islamabad: A spokesman of the Government has taken serious exception to the misreporting of the cabinet proceedings contrary to the briefing by the Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting onOctober 31, 2012.

Some newspapers placed misleading, fabricated and mischievous headlines which were totally out of context and contrary to facts, the spokesman said. Some others carried reports from news agencies which too were factually incorrect and based on mere fabrication. It appears that irresponsible reporting has become a norm rather than exception which is against the principle of fairness and journalistic ethics, the Spokesman said.

To quote a few instances, the spokesman said, the Prime Minister did not utter the words attributed to him like admission of failure of policies. Another instance is the report about election reforms. Minister for Information in his briefing had categorically said that election laws were not discussed but still some papers chose to report as if it was discussed.

The spokesman pointed out that discussions in the Cabinet meeting were held in very cordial atmosphere. The members of the Cabinet expressed their views on subject of national importance in a free and frank manner. No Minister quarreled or exchanged harsh words but unfortunately some newspapers reported that the Finance Minister was allegedly criticized for his economic policies, which is incorrect, baseless and mischievous. On the contrary the Prime Minister appreciated the efforts of the Finance Minister and his economic team.

Regarding contents of the press release based on proceedings of the Cabinet meeting, the spokesman said, the reporters concerned did not even bother to use it. The press briefing by the Minister for Information and Broadcasting also received scant coverage as it did not figure in the priority of majority newspapers, the spokesman regretted.

While the Government respects the freedom of press, it also expects the press to display sense of responsibility and accord due coverage to the Government point of view as an obligation of the newspapers towards its readers, the spokesman added.

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