President: (President says media plays key role to eliminate extremism, violence)

ISLAMABAD: President Mamnoon Hussain has emphasized the responsible, objective and effective role of media, which plays vital role in elimination of extremism, terrorism and promotion of high human values including tolerance and brotherhood.

Speaking to the opening session of National Seerat Conference here on Sunday, the President said that media should act for betterment of the country and the nation as our religion and complete obedience of Holy Prophet (Peace be upon Him) guide us in this regard.

The President said that human society, particularly the Muslim society was like a family with its members attached with each other by the bond of cooperation, tolerance, and brotherhood.

He said the Holy Prophet had termed the Islamic society as a building with its parts supporting each other and the similar characteristic of the nations make them impregnable. He said our media should play the similar role for betterment of the country and the nation.

He said this region particularly Pakistan was faced with terrorism for last decade. He paid tribute to the martyrs of Peshawar tragedy and asked their families not to feel them alone as the whole nation shared their grief and stood with them.

He said that we could define and review the role of media in light of the teachings of the Holy Prophet and added that media’s objective and responsible role could help rid the country of unrest.

He called for cautiousness and responsibility regarding the incidents of terrorism and the matters involving national security and state secrets adding one should also consider the directives of Quran and Sunnah in this regard.

“On the basis of the very principles, we call journalism truly the fourth pillar of the state,” he remarked. He said our media had played remarkable role regarding the national security and national interest but there are also some instances of crossing the limits.

He said sometimes, people raise objections about restrictions on media freedom but “I confidently say that this matter is not related to the freedom of media but its responsible use”. He said if we examine the current situation in light of Quran, it would be clear that the principles of journalism in vogue today, had been taught by Islam some 1400 years ago.

He hoped that such gatherings would not only help us address our shortcomings through mutual interactions but also help devise national strategy keeping in view the prevailing situation. He also felicitated the prize winners in the conference. The religious scholars belonging to different schools of thought also addressed the conference highlighting different aspects of the life of Holy Prophet (PBUH).

Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Sardar Mohammad Yousuf, Minister of State Pir Aminul Hasnaat Shah, cabinet members, parliamentarians, religious scholars and people from all walks of life participated in the conference.

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