Caretaker Prime Minister Anwar-ul-Haq Kakar recently met with the Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) Standing Committee, led by President Irshad Arif.
During this meeting, the prime minister emphasized the need to counter a systematic campaign of negative propaganda against the state and foster an environment conducive to positive debates and discussions, promoting diversity and differences of opinion, with newspapers playing a pivotal role.
Regarding his recent visit to America, the prime minister addressed the challenges posed by a systematic campaign of fake news and unwarranted criticism. He said that despite these challenges, Pakistan’s case on climate change was presented in a positive manner.
The prime minister further highlighted the issue of petroleum product smuggling, which is causing severe damage to the country’s economy. He mentioned that comprehensive measures are being implemented across the country to prevent electricity theft, which is crucial for the nation’s economic stability.
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwar-ul-Haq Kakar expressed his commitment to unlocking Pakistan’s trade potential of billions of dollars with Central Asian states and underlined the efforts to make the most of this potential within a short time frame.
Additionally, he discussed the upcoming visit to China, focusing on Pakistan-China strategic relations, bilateral trade, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), and the promotion of tourism. Plans to harness the tourism potential of Gilgit-Baltistan will be a part of these discussions, he emphasized.
Addressing the issue of loss-making government institutions, the prime minister stressed that privatization would reduce financial losses to the national exchequer while encouraging positive business competition and enhancing public service provision.
In the realm of foreign relations, Anwar-ul-Haq Kakar clarified that legally residing Afghan refugees are not being sent back; only illegal foreigners will face deportation, with strict action to be taken against them after October 31. He reaffirmed Pakistan’s support for the oppressed Palestinians in their struggle for self-determination and an independent state, denouncing the recent aggression by Israel in Palestine.
During the meeting, the CPNE delegation apprised the PM of the challenges faced by newspapers and magazines. In response, the PM directed the Secretary of Information to increase the rates for newspaper advertisements, ensure equitable distribution of advertisements, and promptly resolve outstanding payments.
The CPNE delegation included Anwar Sajdi, Ahmad Shafiq, Zulfiqar Rahat, Aamir Mahmood, Tahir Farooq, Arif Baloch, Sardar Khan Niazi, Ijaz ul Haq, Hamid Hussain Abidi, Ghulam Nabi Chandio, Maqsood Yousufi, Zia Tanuli, Mumtaz Sadiq, Yahya Khan Saduzai, Munir Baloch, Kazim Khan, Ayaz Khan, Hyder Amin, and other members. The secretary of information, principal information officer, and relevant senior officials also attended the meeting.