Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain on Thursday appreciated the role of Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) in promoting democracy, upholding journalistic values and creating awareness among the people. Congratulating the newly elected office bearers of CPNE including President Kazam Khan, Senior Vice President Ayaz Khan, Secretary General Amir Mahmood and Deputy Secretary General Yousuf Nizami, he said that CPNE is the custodian of excellent journalistic traditions in the country. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government fully believed in the democratic and fundamental right to freedom of expression, he said, adding “We will continue to provide all possible support for the promotion of freedom of press and development of active media in the country”. The minister expressed the hope that the newly elected officials would meet the expectations of the journalistic community for the betterment of the journalism sector and the welfare of the media industry. Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Farrukh Habib also felicitated newly elected office bearers of the CPNE, including President Kazam Khan and General Secretary Amir Mehmood. In a statement, he expressed the hope that the newly elected leadership of CPNE would play central role in promoting press freedom. Farrukh said Protection of Journalists and Media Professionals Act, 2021 had been enacted as Prime Minister Imran Khan and his government fully believed in media freedom. He said the new act would ensure protection of journalists and media professionals’ life, jobs and rights. The minister described fake news a major challenge and called for collective efforts to tackle the issue. It is worth mentioning here that the Standing Committee of the CPNE had elected Group Editor Daily Times Kazam Khan as President on Wednesday. Group Editor Express Newspapers Ayaz Khan was elected Senior Vice President, Yousuf Nizami Deputy Secretary General and Amir Mahmood Secretary General. The CPNE meeting had also decided to oppose the Pakistan Media Development Authority (PMDA) at all forums. The Council had strongly condemned unjust distribution of advertisements and raids on the printing presses and demanded immediate clearance of newspaper arrears. A resolution was also passed demanding accountability of some officers of the Information Department for their misconduct.