Info minister’s decision to lease out Radio Pakistan HQ triggers agitation | Pakistan Today

Info minister’s decision to lease out Radio Pakistan HQ triggers agitation

ISLAMABAD: Following the protest of Radio Pakistan’s employees on Monday against the shifting of the national broadcaster’s headquarters, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry on Monday said that the workplace will not be shifted within a month as the employees will be consulted in this regard.

On Monday, Radio Pakistan’s employees rejected the information minister’s orders of vacating the headquarters building and launched an agitation, demanding the government withdraw its decision. They said that Radio Pakistan is a historic institution projecting the soft image of the country across the world.

Sources told Pakistan Today that the newly proposed building in H-9 Islamabad has the capacity of only 200 employees whereas 1,500 Radio Pakistan employees currently work in the headquarters building situated in Country’s Capital Constitutional Avenue.

“There are many units of FM Sections and Radio News Sections in the seven-storey Radio Pakistan Headquarters whereas the proposed building by the government is Radio Pakistan’s Academy and Hostel which only has 25 to 30 rooms and it is impossible to shift all of the radio setup in such a small building,” they added.

An official told Pakistan Today that if the government really wants to generate revenue, Radio Pakistan has its own piece of land which is free and government can construct commercial buildings on that and get the rental revenue.

“Along with this, there should be another solution for generating revenue rather than cutting the number of employees and demolishing the identity of the national institution,” he added.

Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain held talks with the protesters regarding the ministry’s proposal to give building of Radio Pakistan’s headquarters on lease and shifting of National Broadcasting House to Pakistan Broadcasting Academy in H-9 Islamabad.

The minister told the protesting employees that the headquarters is not being shifted within this month, assuring them that they will be consulted regarding the issue. “Institutions cannot grow until employees are satisfied with their working conditions,” he said.

Earlier, PPP leaders and former information minister Marriyum Aurangzeb visited the protesting employees of Radio Pakistan and expressed solidarity with them.

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