Barely an hour ago I was up in arms trying to break the new about the nonavailability of Geo.Tv and Aaj.tv in a number of localities of Karachi. A number of reports have come through some claiming it to be blocked while others saying Aaj is on the air but Geo is blocked. Puzzling reports go onwards to state that the rest of the country the channels are fine without even so much as a hiccup.
This is indeed a puzzling incident and after some serious discussions with a number of friends (story credit Inspirex) I feel we have ourselves a drama queen trying to create some sort of chaos and put pressure on the Government of Pakistan. President Pervaiz Musharraf already has a plate full of problems in terms of the CJP fiasco, Justice Iftikhar and the lawyers supporting him have been rallying around the country to create additional pressure on the government to reinstate the Chief Justice of Pakistan, I fully support the cause, as I feel Musharraf has simply lost his sanity and is slowly going berserk like a crazed captain on a pirate ship. Its now been said, that if you are with him good otherwise Walk the Plank, Har Har.
The CJP issue seems to have Lahore and Islamabad up in a fix while Karachi seems to be simply asleep on this issue, we only read it on the front pages of news headlines and after that it appears to be a normal day at work. Karachi was never up in arms about the issue, more importantly because MQM had been carefully taken care off…. Altaf Hussain issued statements well after a week as if to wake up from a slumber party and say ‘whats this going on’ without the rallying power of MQM Karachi had a blissful sleep while the northern areas of Pakistan burned in the name of Justice.
Heading back to the topic at hand, GEO did have a tussle with the Government since the get-go which ultimately landed with a handful of warnings and even the suspension of a host during the CJP crisis. Mir Shakeel-ur-Rehamn is in no small terms a cunning fellow, he knows that he wields power of the media in his grasp and plays his own tune when he wants too. Since a few days the Jang Group it seems has not been in talking terms with the bureaucracy and I can assume that he must be itching to resume the fight.
What will Govt of Pakistan achieve to block Geo in Karachi ?
This is a good question that was also posed to me when I made the post on my blog about the blocking of Geo and Aaj in Karachi. Why would this censorship be limited to Karachi only and that too being limited to a number of select cable operators in the area (World Call Karachi). The first thing that people start to suspect is that it is a move by the Government of Pakistan to censor Geo in light of the Chief Justice of Pakistan crisis, I too reasoned likewise. This assumption will create a revolt in Karachi and people will start to rally against President Musharraf and give him additional pressure on the CJP fiasco, something which the government definitely does not want. Punjab is enough to worry about they don’t have to mess with the emotions of Sindh and stir a sleeping giant.
What will GEO achieve to have it blocked in Karachi ?
Well thats an interesting question, they simply achieve the attention of having been at the receiving end of a gag-order issued by the President of Pakistan, they achieve front page headline in tomorrows newspapers, the could also potentially wake Karachi from its slumber and be at the forefront of the assault on President Musharraf creating more pressure for him to succumb to any new demands Shakeel-ur-Rehamn might have up his sleeve, better yet they have a story which can go down in the history books as their struggle for free speech. Mind you people of Pakistan all know the cunning nature of Jang Group to be a force to reckon with.
An important point should also be noted is the fact that Geo.tv website has nothing about the incident, how strange, for a news organization to be taken off-air against its wishes will definitely start issuing strong statements in whatever way possible.
UPDATE: GEO.Tv website has just issued a statement “In some parts of country including Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkar, Mirpur Khas and Nawabshah, Geo News telecast has been blocked. Some circles claimed that MQM bade the cable operators to shut down the telecast. The cable operators were allegedly asked to keep the telecast closed down until the chief justice rally came to an end.” – seems like a lame excuse,
Could it be an MQM ploy to teach GEO a lesson as there is little doubt that MQM have a full authoritarian control over the cable network operators in Karachi and Hyderabad, it has previously threatened ARY with dire consequences when they refused to cover press statements of Altaf Hussain and it did not take long for ARY to do a 180 and succumb to their requests and start covering news items concerning Bhai, we are most definitely shown his statements on a regualr basis for the past few years. Seriously this can only be the logical explanation to have Geo go down in MQM controlled localities of Karachi and Hyderabad.
I suspect there is some thing more then the eye can see, naturally this is all speculation and can be turned around to be nothing at all, but if we find that rat scurrying around somewhere then Geo should most definitely be renamed as the Drama Queen of 2007
Just a little observation. Geo News and ARY One World are free to air and anyone can watch it on a dish and people are able to view it in other parts of country, how do you think geo would go on and block its telecast in Karachi.
Think about it.
BTW, the cable operators are squarely laying the blame on PEMRA.
i dont believe mir-Shakeel’ur rehman is playing here – its the MQM showing its bad sides again as no channel covered their rally .
Yet another addition in this ongoing saga. While I laud Geo for its efforts towards revolutionizing Pakistan’s media industry, pro-India-ization and self-victimizing is also its forte. I have been observing this for quiet some time and Geo and Jang seem to be going down the drain.
About MQM, I don’t expect it to do anything good so long as Altaf Hussein remains a leader of it. This might seem to be Punjabi rhetoric but I firmly believe this. BB and NS are equally abhorant leaders.
Above all else, my support for Musharraf is still strong since CJ Iftikhar is politicizing his plight, which has caused me to retract all support from his cause. He seems to be having aspirations to be the next President.
Also, I laud the advertiser who had the ad published in today’s Jang on the front page regarding how even if he comes back as CJ, he will be useless in the position.
I find it hard to digest Geo itself blocked its own transmission as well as of ARY and AAJ. As Anwar puts it, Geo was available on the Dish as well as in other parts of the country, so why block it in parts of Sindh?
The accused in this case have a history of blocking, burning and bombing(?) off anything that they feel threatened with. So, we can’t be so sure.
I also agree that there is more to the drama than what is apparently visible. I have a feeling that the CJP is hijacked by the invisible hands, who are now using him for their means and the political parties are just flowing with the flow.
As I have written earlier, I believe the noose is getting tighter by the day and the drop scene is just around the corner.
Who knows, CJP may be the next President of Pakistan.
I suspect it might have had to do with the geo,aaj and ary covering the lahore rally instead of covering mqm’s own rally in karachi (in front of governor house, which I had a nice view to) that happened during the same time…. MQM does not like to be ignored.
Regrets about views while it was being broadcasted that the GEO (JEEM for JHOOTAY) was being blocked I have never even have heard or seen it done while it was being broadcasted I phoned nearly all my aquaintances in near about every locality of Karachi and found the GEO broadcast was a bullshit and nothing else these people who claim to be the highers of TV media i think that they need to rethink their strategy that by just makingf an issue out of nothing is the policy of media of Pakistan. This should change instead of red journalism we should encourage a better way of judging pe4ople. Why are their stupids like Kamran Khan who can not even Talk properly sitting there and sayin his AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA who cares we are getting the news from these sensationalist jourbnalist
SHAME ON YOU GEO AND YOUR TEAM…………..
GEO DRAMA n ARY DIGITAL r also blocked even those wr nt the news channels Thats only personal guradges of Mushaaf.