Pak Minister Sanctions Ads Worth Crores To Own Newspaper

Islamabad: Pakistan is facing a serious economic slowdown and the media in the country is also reeling under a severe fund crunch. Amid this, a Peshawar-based newspaper is minting money. The secret behind this success is that its owner is a minister in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, who has poured in advertisements into this newspaper after he assumed office as minister.

Without an audit of the newspaper’s actual circulation, the number of advertisements was increased to it at an upgraded price, a media report said.

The report said that the newspaper got a record Rs 5,74,20,000 business through its owner-minister.

Though the minister’s name was not given in the report but he was quoted as saying that no irregularity took place in giving the advertisements and that he doesn’t own that newspaper.

However, government records revealed that the minister has transferred the publishing rights to his brother while the printing rights of the newspaper are still in his name.

Instead of replying to a question in this regard the minister terminated the phone call saying, “write whatever you want”.

The report said there is a law in force to prevent conflict of interest but the minister is violating this norm.