MD Dunya TV Yousuf Baig Mirza under fire for sexual harassment scandal
A female correspondent of Dunya News, Maheen Usmani has recently resigned on protest of sexual harassment by Managing Director Yousuf Baig Mirza. No official response has come from Dunya TV management till filing of this report.
According to Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ), Maheen Usmani tendered her resignation owing to harassment. Although the woman had joined the channel at the time of its launch, she could hardly continue her job for over seven months as she was angry with the continued harassment, coercion and unethical conduct of the top management. She finally got disappointed with the organization and realized that her employer was protecting the managing director, who did not stop abusing his official position and put an end to his tactics.
Maheen said that she had worked in best media organizations during here career and never faced such an ugly situation.
She was shocked to receive a phone call from the MD who, according to her, counted the expected benefits that a less important bureau reporter can get in return for keeping a direct contact with the MD on his personal number. She alleged that the MD’s talk was loathed with innuendos and offers.
The PFUJ regretted that CEO instead of empowering the director news or respective bureau chiefs, gave the MD more powers to interact directly with the reporters who already felt harassed by him. The PFUJ said that she noted all these months that while contractual rights of male staff members were being denied by the said MD despite repeated reminders, but he was going out of way to oblige a female staff member.
She brought the matter to the notice of the director news who took up the matter with the MD who apologized over this incident. However, with the sudden departure of the director news the MD found an opportunity to take revenge.
She alleged that “instead of reigning in MD, the CEO/ owner of the channel gave him an open hand and the MD immediately embarked upon a campaign to place obstacles in her path. Her special assignments were withheld on frivolous grounds. Later her program “Meri Dharti Meri Dunya“, a weekly landmark program of the Dunya News was not aired at the scheduled time and instead a documentary was aired and as such the program was distorted and chopped several times and once it was aired as a filler for a brief time prior to the scheduled live coverage of the President, Richard Holbroke and Shah Mehmood Qureshi.
“There is a need to improve the legislation to protect women at workplaces and create awareness about malpractices in Pakistan’s media industry.”, the PFUJ added.
The PFUJ has urged the President, Prime Minister, Chief Justice of Pakistan, the International Federation of Journalists civil society activists to take notice of increasing incident of young women crews’ harassment at TV channels at hands of media manager enjoying top executive position in these channels.