Pakistan Electronic Media Regulation Authority (PEMRA) has issued a show cause notice to 31 TV channels for airing Gulberg blast news and terrorizing the public, a development that turned out to be a hoax.
Following the unfortunate bomb blast in Defense, Lahore earlier today, which took the lives of 8 people and injured 15, TV channels started reporting of another bomb blast, this time in Gulberg area.
According to the TV channels, the blast occurred outside a restaurant of a foreign food chain in Gulberg. Police and rescue teams were immediately dispatched only to find that nothing had happened.
Police officials denied reports of such a blast and said it was a hoax and possibly someone called in a bomb threat. Punjab Law minister, Rana Sanaullah also denied reports of any blast in Gulberg.
Now PEMRA has asked 31 TV channels to explain the intentions behind this news. The TV channels have to respond within one week with explanation on why a hoax was aired without confirmation.
We have seen a similar trend in print media as well where everyone starts copying each other instead of confirming whether such the reported incident even occurred. Print and electronic media needs to start taking this seriously as spreading hoax news can result in causing unneeded panic in the country.