LAHORE: Special Assistant to Chief Minister Punjab Mr Hassan Khawar has stressed the need to maintain balance while reporting issues and events. He was addressing the closing ceremony of Doctoral Spring School organized by Association of Media and Communication Academic Professionals in collaboration with Institute of Quality and Technology Management at its auditorium here on Friday. Punjab Irrigation Minister Mohsin Laghari, PU Vice Chancellor Prof Niaz Ahmed, Nico Carpentier from Charles University Czech Republic’s Department of Media Studies, Social Media and Communication Scientist from German Prof Dr Jeffrey Wimmer, Chairperson Department of Journalism Prof Dr Bushra Rehman, Chairperson Department of Public Relations and Advertising Prof Dr Abida Ashraf, Director IQTM Prof Dr Muhammad Usman Awan and a number of faculty members of communication studies from various universities participated in the event.

Addressing the ceremony, Mr Hassan Khawar said that a number of changes had occurred in the international as well as national media. He said that Covid 19 had especially reflected the importance of data journalism and we had witnessed how fake news took the toll of precious lives. He said that we had also witnessed how the media could play a role of torch bearer in society and lead the people towards a specific direction. He said that the ecosystem of the media should serve the society. Appreciating the role and hard work of reporters of private media organizations, he said that it was difficult to understand that around 20 newsmen of the government institutions could not perform the task equal to the work of one newsman of a private TV channel. He said that there was a need to answer many research questions related to various fields of media and expressed the hope that the AMCAP Doctoral Spring School would address this gap between academia and industry. He said that the media was the fourth pillar of the state and it must expose the bad characters of society. However, he said, the media should also present a positive image of the country and maintain balance in reporting. Mr Laghari said that the media should promote a culture that it was always affordable to be late rather than being early but wrong. He said that the media should report facts as such and include correct ingredients in the news content. He said that our genuine issues did not get much time and space in the media. For instance, he said, water shortage is one of the most important issues of the country but we rarely see any discussion or awareness campaign on it. PU VC Prof Niaz Ahmad, while discussing the concerns of Mr Hassan Khawar, said that only those institutions survive that understand the contemporary challenges and work harder for the betterment of their organizations. He said that there was a need to change the mindset of employees at our public sector institutions, keeping in view the present state of affairs of Pakistan Steel Mills, PIA, Pakistan Railways etc. Dr Bushra Rehman said that AMCAP’s Spring School initiative would bring change and address genuine concerns in the field of journalism. She said that the media needed to play a constructive role and thanked the VC for his all-out support for organizing the Spring School. Later, souvenirs were distributed among the distinguished guests.

Author

Arsalan Haider is a reporter at Academia Mag and has worked with leading national dailies and news channels. He tweets @arsalanhaider14

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