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Govt withdraws proposed plan to lease out Radio Pakistan building

ISLAMABAD: The government has decided to withdraw its plan to lease out historical building of Radio Pakistan after strong resistance put up by the employees, ARY News reported.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Ali Muhammad Khan said Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry wanted the uplift of Radio Pakistan hence he had announced the leasing plan, adding ‘we don’t intend to sale the building or the institution.”

He stated that the government is now withdrawing proposal to lease out the building.

Radio Pakistan
The new notification issued by the government.

The minister said the employees would now have to float proposals within a month on betterment of the state-run radio service.

He assured the employees that the Information Minister would not take any decision against the employees.

Workers of the Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) took to the streets against the government’s notification for leasing out the PBC building in order to generate funds.

The building, they said, represented the voice of Pakistan and aspirations of millions of Pakistanis and was of historic importance as former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had inaugurated it back in early 1970s.

The protest held in front of the Radio Pakistan’s main building, was participated by not only the officers, staff and workers of the PBC but also by the retired employees.

According to them, the PTI government’s decision to lease out a building of historic importance would be tantamount to disrespecting an institute that was born simultaneously with the birth of Pakistan.

Radio Pakistan
The government notification proposing the leasing of Radio Pakistan building.

A former deputy controller of Radio Pakistan Safdar Hamdani was of the view that people of the subcontinent learnt about partition of India and birth of Pakistan through Radio Pakistan Lahore in 1947.

Radio Pakistan has been quite instrumental in infusing spirit of patriotism and Ideology of Pakistan among the masses, he said.

An official said at present more than 1,500 staffers are working in the Islamabad station of Radio Pakistan.

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