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PPF Journalism Training workshop, Gujranwala Punjab

Location: Gujranwala

Date: August 23 -25

Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) organised a 3 -day Journalism Training Workshop at Qila Deodar Singh, District Gujranwala and Punjab for local journalists and women from 23-25 August 2005.

Qila Deedar Singh, located at a distance of 35 kilometres from Gujranwala, is an important agricultural market town in the suburb of highly industrialized Gujranwala city. It is named after a general of Maharaja Ranjeet Singh who ruled the area. With a population of over 50,000 people, Qila Deedar Singh also serves as a lush green suburban residential area for well off industrialists of Gujranwala.

31 participants attended the workshop held at the local Press Club. The break up was 6 educated women and 25 men represented various national, regional and local newspapers and magazines. The PPF instructors’ team consisted of Mr.Fazal Qureshi, Chief Editor PPI & Vice Chairman PPF. Mr. Atique Yousuf Zia correspondent PPI was the local organizer of the programme.

The workshop opened with a recitation from the Holy Quran. Mr.Atique, who is also the Chairman of the Press Club welcomed the instructors and thanked PPF for organising the workshop at small town like Qila Deedar Singh. Mr.Atique said he knew that PPF had organised similar journalism training workshops in other cities and was waiting for the turn of Qila Deedar Singh.

Mr. Fazal Qureshi, in his brief opening remarks said PPF had been organizing similar workshops in a large number of cities in all four provinces of Pakistan. PPF, he said, had found highly enthusiastic response among the participants .It was now receiving requests from various parts of Pakistan to hold similar workshops.

After introduction by men and women participants, the working sessions began. The first segment began with brainstorming about definition of news. This was followed by explanation of the principles of news writing, and the concept of Inverted Pyramid in news writing. Every segment was followed by open discussion through questions and answers covering a wide range of subjects relating to news writing.

A discussion on principles of news ethics and news values was the next segment. The participants participated in the discussion and all aspects of journalism ethics including complaints about blackmailing and irresponsible news reporting were discussed threadbare. The next segment was on article and feature writing. The lecture covered article writing from beginning to end, stage by stage, from how to select a subject, how to write a theme sentence to determine the parameters of the subject, how to collect and sort out the material and how to write the article. The lecture emphasized the need for professional preparation of a neat and clean manuscript, the importance of photographs and finally on how to market articles and features in the media.

In the practical exercise that followed, the participants were asked to select a subject, write an article on some issue of thei
r area, which could be used for release to the newspapers. Part of the exercise was done as homework. Their output was then discussed in open session and evaluated.

Finally, the participants were given a home assignment to write an article on the subject, which they had selected during the practical exercise. The articles were presented and discussed in the opening session the next day. The discussion enabled the participants to increase their knowledge and skill about writing articles for newspapers. The last segment of the programme was about importance of maintaining reference records on subjects of interest to the writers. Then an open discussion followed. Participants also gave their feedback about the workshop.

Ms Tanzila Kanwal, a local social worker said she found the workshop very useful since it helps her polish her writing skills. She wanted PPF to hold similar workshops in nearby towns. Ms. Rubina Kanwal, a local teacher said that the duration of the workshop was not enough. It should be extended to at least one week. She also said that if the contents of the workshop had been fully explained many other women would have attended the workshop.

Ms. Munawara Sadiq, a political worker said she was glad she attended because she gained new writing skills and knowledge about technicalities of writing for newspapers.
Mr. Abrar Sarwar, correspondent for daily Phulekha said that the workshop had helped him acquire the skill and ability to write for newspapers .He said that the subject of journalism should be included in the educational curriculum at the graduation level both for men and for women.

Mian Azhar Hussain, Correspondent Daily Pakistan Islamabad, proposed that PPF should help train local trainers in this programme so that the skill of article writing could be continued in surrounding areas through local initiative.

Then the participants were given evaluation forms and asked to comment on the quality of the workshop and any suggestions they might have for further improvement. The closing session was presided over by Mr. Mohammad Abbas Khan, President Pakistan Muslim League Qila Deedar Singh who distributed the certificates to the participants.

In his speech, Mr. Abbas Khan appreciated PPF for having organized the journalism-training workshop in Qila Deedar Singh. He specially welcomed the measure for having included women in the workshop. Highlighting the importance and utility of the workshop, he said as he heard from participants, they were now equipped with new skills and awareness about the techniques and ethics of news and article writing. Others who addressed the closing session including General Secretary Press Club Mr. Mohammad Yousuf Shad and President of the Press Club Mr. Javed Shad. Both strongly praised the usefulness of the workshop and said they would be requesting PPF for another workshop for those journalists who could not participate in the present workshop.



List of Participants
Mr.Mohammad Shaukat Dar
Crime Reporter
Roznama Post Mortem Lahore
Mr. Mian Azhar Hussain Chaudhry
General Reporter
Roznama Pakistan Islamabad
Mr. Haji Mohammad Arshad Zahid
Information Secretary
Press Club Qila Deedar Singh
Mr.Tariq Aziz
Editor Monthly
The Asian Affairs international U/E & Weekly Asian Age International U/E
Mr. Atif Saleem
ARY One World
Mr. Saifullah Waryah
Deputy Editor
Haftroza Sakhar
Mr. Mohammad Akram
Weekly Sakhr Gujranwala
Mr. Zahid Majeed
Special Representative
Daily Pakistan Lahore
Mr. Atique Yousuf Zia
Pakistan Press international (PPI)
Mr. Noman Noor
Urdu Times
Mr. Talal Qudrat Butt
Roznama Leader
Mr. Hakeem Asif Mehmood Butt
Roznama Dupeher
Mr. Faiz-ur- Rehman Zia
Sub Editor
Roznama Urdu Times
Mr. Anjum Younus
Roznama Sahafat
Mr. Saifullah Chughtai
Mr. Shahzad Mughal
Roznama Khudmukhtar Lahore
Mr. Rana Adnan Ali
Daily Taqreer
Mr. Rana Amir Sohail
Daily Dawn
Mr. Muhammad Fayyaz
Press Club
Mr. Munawara Akhtar
Miss. Gulnaz Sadique Health NGO
Miss. Ruqaiya Aslam
Health Foundation
Miss. Samina Kausar
Social Welfare
Miss. Rubina Kanwal
Lady Reporter
Weekly Sakhar
Miss. Tanzila Kanwal
Lady Reporter Roznama
Taqreer Gujranwala
Mr. Javed Shad
Reporter Roznama
Mr. Mian Mohammad Mansha
Press Reporter
Daily Tijarat
Mr. Abrar Suroor
Special Correspondent
Roznama Phulekha
Mr. Mian Mohammad Shoaib Mansha

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