Pemra asked to cease coverage of Shiekh Rashid smoking cigars
The Pakistan National Heart Association (Panah) urged the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) to issue an instruction to all media outlets, prohibiting coverage of Awami Muslim League (AML) Chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed smoking cigars as his habit could influence the young generation.
In a letter penned to media watchdog, Panah General Secretary Sanaullah Ghumman since 1984, Panah has been actively endeavouring to reduce the prevalence of cardiovascular diseases in the country.
It added that Panah had played an important role in alleviating the suffering of those affected by natural disasters in the country, as well as helping the poor access costly cardiac investigations, angioplasty, stents, and cardiac surgery.
Furthermore, it noted that the President of Pakistan is their patron-in-chief and that they work closely with policymakers to advocate for policies to reduce non-communicable diseases and other fatal illnesses.
“Shiekh Rashid often waves a cigar during pressers, and this action can have a negative influence on the younger generation, who may assume that Sheikh Rashid Ahmed’s success was due to smoking and that cigars are a symbol of power. As a result, they may be tempted to take up smoking themselves,” it maintained.
The letter further demanded Pemra to issue a general instruction not to provide coverage to any person who promotes smoking. “In Pakistan, already 1,200 new children start smoking every day,” it stated.