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Pakistan: DJs and singers silenced with new loudspeaker regulation

13 April 2015

Pakistan_Punjab_soundssyste

In the Punjab province in Pakistan, DJs, singers and show organisers are threatening to launch province-wide protest if Police continues to register cases against them while seizing their music equipment and loudspeaker systems because of a new legislation, the ‘Punjab Sound System Regulation Ordinance 2015’.

The Punjab Government enforced the ‘Punjab Sound System Regulation Ordinance 2015’ on 6 January 2015 in the Punjab province under the National Action Plan, framed after 150 people in Army Public School Peshawar we killed on 16 December 2014.

The intention with the ordinance is to quell hate speech acts and related terrorist tendencies in the country.

Punjab Sound (DJ) Association President Shafiq Butt said that Police had registered around 5,000 cases against owners of sound systems, PA systems and loudspeakers throughout the province.

Shafiq Butt told News Lens Pakistan, “The police stop DJs at different check-posts and demand high bribe on spotting the sound system. The police even do not spare DJs in marriage halls and confiscate their sound systems before arresting them. This situation has troubled DJs and is equal to their economic murder since many of them are getting jobless because of the Ordinance. The police are destroying our culture since music at marriages and parties is a part of our culture.”

Butt claimed that no hate speech is made by DJs on the sound systems. He told News Lens Pakistan that DJs would soon move to court and launch province-wide protest if police did not stop arresting DJs.

The Express Tribune reported that police have removed 400 loudspeakers from 200 mosques in an ongoing crackdown against misuse of loudspeakers.

Read more:

» News Lens Pakistan – 2 April 2015:
Silencing DJs, singers Sound System Ordinance


» The Express Tribune – 20 March 2015:
Amplifier act: Police remove extra loudspeakers from mosques


» Dawn – 27 January 2015:
Punjab directs police to implement new ordinances




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Freemuse documents violations of musical and artistic freedom of expression worldwide. In addition to our independent reporting, we monitor and link to relevant and trustworthy news sources. Freemuse has not yet independently verified this case.


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