“Media has no Borders, sometimes it plays a role of a vigilante, sometimes it is a lapdog of the government”


The concept of state was derived from ancient times to the period of Enlightenment. It was transformed from the tribe, to the kingdom and then to the state. State acts as three basic pillars, which are the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. These three pillars make laws, ensure their implementation as well as interpret the laws. As tradition, norms, values transform from time to time, media is considered as the ‘fourth pillar’ of the state now. Undoubtedly media has a vital role in the state running. Media can win wars, media can make heroes, media can be used as a tool of massive propaganda as well.

History witnessed that Vietnam War was manipulated with the support of media, the Iraq War of 2003 was also made up of ad-hominem fallacy. Specifically, in context of Pakistan, the most fragile province Balochistan lacks in development due to various un-pleasantries in past. It was media which gauge the intention of the Federal Government towards the issues of local Baloch. The role of media was very positive and the development started due to media creating awareness.

Eventually, from the last couple of months, media of Balochistan is in the crosshairs of terrorism. Two months ago, the terrorists which left in very minimum quantity, threatened the media houses in Balochistan. In the last month for two days, newspapers were not distributed in whole of Balochistan except Quetta. Yet the situation is still passive as vendors are scared to distribute the newspapers, even the journalists and reports are not producing the news.

The banned militant outfit named as Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF) threatened the media groups that they are supporting the government narrative. They further warned that ‘if you do not stop publishing one-sided propaganda we will take strict action’. Even in the past media was the target of these insurgents in the province. According to the International Federation of Journalists, 29 media workers were killed in the province between 2007 and 2015.

Media of Pakistan itself is an independent organ. The terrorists start getting offensive when their narrative is not entertained by the media operating in Balochistan. As the media is not blind, it covered the whole transformation of Balochistan, hence it stopped producing the version of these banned militant outfits.

The repercussions faced by the media were outrageous. The BLF set a deadline of 24 October for newspapers to begin publishing their claims. Media performs its job efficiently and didn’t publish the version of any banned militant outfit. As a result, grenades were thrown at a press club in the town of Hub and at a news agency in the city of Turbat, injuring a number of people. Moreover, a bomb was disposed of by FC, which was installed on the car of a senior reporter in Quetta.

Analyzing the different incidents, it is very prominent that there is a dire need for media security. Until and unless these threats will be there, media can’t do the desired job in the province. International coverage is required in the province as development is ongoing in Balochistan. Law Enforcement Agencies must chart a framework for media security so the risk could be averted.


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