Covid-19 and Role of Radio Pakhtunkhwa Pakistan
Guglielmo Marconi was the Italian person who had invented radio. The main purpose of radio is to share information, aware people regarding different social & political resolutions and entertainment etc. Initially, there was a radio station for a large capacity, but with the passage of time, radio waves have also evolved and now city-to-city radio is available. Basically, broadcasting is one of the most important responsibilities of the state, but the state has also enacted laws allowing private entities to run channels under a special permit (NOCs). These laws called Pakistan Electronic Regulatory Authority (PEMRA).
Channels running by State are called Public Channels. Pakistan Television, Radio Pakistan and officials FM Channels are Public Channels. FM radios under the umbrella of Directorate of General Information Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are also working as a Public Channel. Pakhtunkhwa Radio Mardan FM MHz 92.6 is one of that Channel and playing a vital role in spreading important information regarding Covid-19 outbreak.
On February 26, 2020, first case of Covid-19 was reported in Karachi, Pakistan. After March 18 Corona Virus took over the whole country. The Public and Private Channels have started Public Service Announcement (PSAs). Pakhtunkhwa Radio Mardan FM 92.6 started regular awareness programs regarding the issue which are still in progress. A huge number of viewers are in touch with the said broadcasting. In each program, representatives from health department along with other health experts were invited for their expert opinions. General public were facilitated with on air and off air telephone calls to ask questions from experts.
Mr. Ansar Ullah Khilji (Station Manager) and Mr.Sajid Mahmood (Admin In charge) have played key roles in broadcasting these programs. Mr.Asif Mohmand and Mr.Sajjad Hoti have presented special transmissions on regular basis as Anchor/Presenters. Mr.Akbar Hoti has conducted special programs about the legal and cultural aspect of the pandemic. Mr.Sahil Yousafzai, Mr.Suleman Kamil, Mr.Noor Rahman Sahar, Mr.Ali Khan, Mr.Hanif Awan, Mr.Meher Andish, Miss.Nargaz Ada, BiBi Sherena, Miss.Nida Khan, Miss.Saba Ali, Miss.Sher Rahman Shabnam and others hosts have also broadcasted several programs regarding the pandemic.
The main topics of the radio programs were pandemic, its historical backgrounds, Corona virus, precautionary measures, immune system, different flues, quarantines rules, laws about public health & safety, Pakistan Penal Code (Chapter 14), Criminal Procedure Code (Sec 144), restrictions and social/cultural/physical distances. During these programs the role of doctors, nurses and social workers were also appreciated.
In addition to the above topics, the outbreak was reported and Mardan health experts, representatives from District Administration and District Police Office were invited in several programs. Hundreds of listener calls were included in the programs and listeners’ questions were answered. As the public were greatly distressed and depressed by the outbreak, the radio also aired music and other entertainment programs to entertain public during these hard days.
The Government and Private TV Channels have highlighted the role of Radio Pakhtunkhwa Mardan in their news transmissions. Similarly social media of US Embassy in Pakistan has also appreciated the tremendous job of Radio Pakhtunkhwa Mardan. In documented history, the role of Radio Pakhtunkhwa Pakistan will be written in golden words.
By: Akbar Hoti
The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely of the author. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of writersclubpk.com and its staff members.
Note: The Author is the Chairman of Writers Club Pakistan. He is also Practicing Lawyer, Language & Literature Specialist, Poet and Radio Presenter. His detailed profile is available in Writers Directory.