New Delhi: Amid rising tension with New Delhi and deteriorating relations with other SAARC members, the Pakistan government on Saturday decided to ban all Indian channels nationwide from October 15.
According to ANI inputs, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority has taken up the decision of banning all Indian channels nationwide.
In a press release, PEMRA wrote, "PEMRA has warned that strict action would be taken according to law after October 15 if TV channels and distribution networks failed to follow the directions."
The authority also said it was receiving numerous complaints on illegal Indian content being aired on satellite TV channels. The decision was taken after looking at the current situation of India and Pakistan, following which authorities have been urged to impose immediate ban on broadcast and distribution of illegal Indian content and illegal Indian DTH.
The decision emerged on Saturday, a day after Pakistan’s theatre owners decided to withdraw and ban screening of Indian movies until bilateral tensions between two countries subside.
"We will suspend the exhibition of Indian films till normalcy. No Indian movies will play in my cinemas from Friday onwards for sure," said Nadeem Mandviwalla, owner of Mandviwalla Entertainment which runs Atrium Cinemas in Karachi and Centaurus in Islamabad.
On Thursday, the Indian Motion Picture Producers’ Association (IMPPA) announced to impose a ban on all Pakistani artistes working in India.
Recently, popular Pakistani actors Fawad Khan had to return back to his country after facing threat from Maharashtra Navnirman ShivSena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray.
Indian films are extremely popular in Pakistan. Last week, two Bollywood films, 'Pink' and 'Banjo', were released in the country. This week another movie, 'M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story', was due to be released, but distributor IMGC Global Entertainment withheld it as the company felt the film could have anti-Pakistani elements in its narrative, IANS news agency reported.
Super Cinema network, which runs 10 cinemas in cities across Pakistan's Punjab province, also stopped screening Indian movies, according to general manager Khorem Gultasab.
"From Friday, no Bollywood film will be screened at Super Cinemas for at least two weeks," Gultasab said.
"I think we should show solidarity with our army engaged at very hot borders right now, and secondly with our actors," he added, noting that the move to ban Bollywood production has been made by cinema owners of their own accord, not on government directions.