Strengthening the Capacity of Pakistan’s Women TV Journalists

A four-day workshop for Pakistan’s women television journalists and funded by the UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) has concluded on 13th April, in Karachi. A total of 17 journalists working for different TV channels participated in the workshop, with the main objective to strengthen their professional capacity in news gathering and news productions. The workshop was kicked off on 10th April 2013.

Role of female journalists are very important in the field of media. Reporter has to provide analysis in his/her report. This was stated by Taj Haider, former Senator and General Secretary PPP while speaking at the concluding ceremony of the workshop. He said there are certain forces in a society, journalists have to reach out and understand that forces which brings societal change. A Reporter has to dig out the real facts that what is going on and what is the reason behind it. A big bribe for journalists is news but journalists should not do immoral activities in order to get information, he stressed. He shared few of his valuable experience with renowned journalists of Pakistan and said that I have seen many journalists working, so my advice to young journalists is to learn.

There should not be any panic in the voice of news anchor in emergency situation, Naheed Taj, former news anchor of News One stated. She added that the habit of reading should be adopted by News Anchor in order to enhance their knowledge.


Executive Director of Women Media Centre (WMC) of Pakistan said that WMC is acting as UNESCO’s partner in implementing the workshop, explained to the participants that IPDC is the only multilateral forum in the UN system designed to mobilize the international community to discuss and promote media development in developing countries. She further said that there is a dearth of practical training of female students of media studies and female journalists in Pakistan. She also said that it was the first that democratically elected parliament has completed its tenure and we will see a democratic transfer of power and media will a play crucial role. Thus, there was a dire need of such training of media force in this regard, she added.

A number of important aspects in television news production were touched upon and discussed during the workshop, that include – among others — brief history of the media, the characteristic of state versus private television channels, the importance of the credibility of journalists and anchors, newsroom cycle, news gathering, do’s and don’ts for news anchors, dealing with complex situation particularly during elections. Participants also prepared election related News Bulletin as the outcome of the workshop.

One of the instructors, Ms. Muniba Gull, Head of Programming Star Asia News Channel, gave presentation on the media status in Pakistan, including the difference between state and private news television channels. She also talked about biased and unbiased reporting, journalist and anchor credibility, qualities and skill anchors need. She said that an anchor must be able to sight read, able to make sense of poorly written script, able to define complicated concept and text to viewers and for this she/he must have excellent general knowledge.

Another trainer, Mr. Kavi Shankar, Assignment Editor of Dawn News TV, touched upon the issues of basic elements of news, types of news, as well as news gathering and news formation. He also discussed news bulletin sequence according to international standards. The relevance of media ethics were also covered during this workshop.

During this four day training course, producers, news anchors, news directors, copy editors, cameramen working with different news TV channels came to share their expertise & professional tips with the workshop participants including Mr. Aziz, Senior Producer, Shaista Iqbal, News Anchor from Aaj News, Mr. Qazi Asif, Senior Journalist, Mr Muhammad Farooq, Associate Producer AP, Fareed Raees, News Anchor from Dawn News, Saddam Hashmi, News Anchor Aaj News.

The Karachi workshop was the first of the total six similar workshops that will be organized till September 2013 in six different major cities of Pakistan, namely Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Quetta, Hyderabad and Islamabad.

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