Lahore(27 February, 2018): One Day International Conference on “World trends in freedom of expression and Media Development ” A Pakistani perspective on UNESCO report held at Institute of Communication Studies Punjab University on 27 February, 2018 in collaboration with UNESCO, Higher Education Commission, OSLO AND AKERSHUS UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF APPLIED SCIENCES, AMCAP and Punjab University. Delegates from North America, Norway, Malaysia, Indonesia, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Well known journalists from all over the Pakistan were the part of this conference.
The inaugural session of this conference was held at AL Razi Hall from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. Inaugural ceremony started with the recitation and translation of Holy Quran then the speakers of the conference initiated the session. The speakers of this session were:
Dr. Bushra Hameedur Rehman (Assistant Professor, ICS PU; President AMCAP; Focal Person & Convener), Dr. Noshina Saleem (Assistant Professor, In-charge ICS PU), Mr. Fahad Mahmood(Assistant Professor ICS PU;Co-Convener), Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Eide (Professor Oslo Metropolitan University; Director JMIC), Ms. Camila Ferro (UNESCO Consultant on Communication & Information), H.E. Tore Nedrebø(Ambassador,Royal Norwegian Embassy,Islamabad), H.E (Ingrid Johansson Ambassador,Sweden Embassy, Islamabad), Mr. Wajahat Saeed Khan( Reporter, NBC News; National Security Correspondent, Dunya News) Mr. Mazhar Abbas (Senior Analyst Geo TV Network), Mr. Suhail Warraich (Senior Editor, Jang Group of Newspapers), Prof. Dr. Syed Abdul Siraj (Professor Media Studies Department, Bahria University Islamabad), Prof. Dr. Muhammad Zakria Zakar (Vice Chancellor University of the Punjab, Lahore).
While addressing the session Vice Chancllor Dr Zakria Zakir said that:
For ensuring the freedom of expression we will have to ensure the action against violent groups.
UNESCO Communication Consultant Ms. Camila Ferro said that:
Freedom of media should be ensured and journalists should be provided with financial protection so they will not become puppets in government’s hands. She further added that due to efforts of UNESCO, 112 countries around the world have passed laws in favor of freedom of expression.
Mazahr Abbas emphasized on the strength of 4th pillar of the state and said that if a journalist get harmed his organization should protect his story.
Dr. Bushra stated that As human beings we need to work on collective wisdom whereas Dr. Noshina shared brief history of Institute of Communication Studies that how it evolved from department of journalism to the institute of communication studies.
Conference comprised of 6 sessions. All the sessions were with different agendas. These six sessions of discussion were media freedom, media pluralism, media independence and safety of journalists. Whereas in 2 sessions research papers were presented. Senior journalists and professors like Salman Ghani, Imran Khan, Sherin Zada, Prof. Dr. Hannan, Tanveer Shahzad, Dr. Rashid Khan, Fahad Mehmood, Seemab Bukhari, Zulqarnain Tahir, Dr. Anjum Zia, Ahmad Waleed, Azam Chaudhry, Dr. Zafar Iqbal, Dr. Sajjad Paracha, Shabir Sarwar and many others expressed their views in the conference.
After tea break concluding session was held at Hameed Nizami Hall, ICS that summarized the whole conference. Ms Abida Ijaz gave some recommendations, while Ms. Najiba Ayubi (Director of Development & Humanitarian Services,Afghanistan), Prof. Dr. Mughees-uddin Sheikh(Dean, Faculty of Media and Communication Studies, University ofCentral Punjab) and Dr. Amparo Cadavid (Dean of Uniminuto’s Faculty of Communication) concluded the conference.
Dr. Bushra Hameedur Rahman and Dr. Noshina Saleem expressed their gratitude to the entire team of conference, speakers and audience. At the end Certificates and Souvenirs were distributed among the speakers.