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PPF Journalism Training workshop, Wazirabad Punjab

Date: August 21- 23, 2005

Location: Wazirabad

Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) organised a 3-day Journalism Training Workshop at Wazirabad, Punjab for local journalists and women from 21 to 23 August 2005.

Wazirabad, located at a distance of 85 kilometers from Lahore, is an important business and industrial center. With a population of over one lakh people, Wazirabad is an important industrial town known for excellent production of knives, swords, cutlery and kitchen ware.

The workshop held at the Good Luck Hotel hall, was attended by 24 participants. The break up was 6 women consisting of teachers, social and political workers. The 18 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. Veteran local journalist and correspondent PPI Mr.Zafarullah Nomani acted as thelocal organizer of the workshop. Senior local journalist Mr. Tariq Amin Khalid in his brief opening remarks thanked PPF for organising the workshops at Wazirabad. Mr. Tariq said that PPF had organised similar journalism training workshops in nearby areas including Gujranwala, and Khanewal. He thanked Mr. Nomani for helping organize this workshop for journalists of Wazirabad.

In his brief opening remarks Mr.Fazal Qureshi 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 .For the last two years, he said PPF had included educated women in the workshops to enable them to write for newspapers on issues of their interest.

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, the concept of Inverted Pyramid in news writing, the principles of 5 W’s and one H. Every segment was followed by open discussion through questions and answers covering a wide range of subjects relating to news writing.

This was followed by a practical exercise on news writing. The participants were given basic material and asked to write a news item with a proper news lead. Quite a few of the participants did a good job of writing a news lead.

A discussion on principles of news ethics and new values was the next segment. The participants took part in the discussions 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 their 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. 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 Mubeena Dar, a working woman said she found the workshop very useful since it helped her polish her writing skills. This is the first ever journalism workshop participated by me and I wish more women could get this chance, she said.

Mrs. Nasreen Sharif a local social worker said that the three day 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 publicised many other women would have attended the workshop. Mr. Shujaul Haq, reporter , Daily Wifaq Lahore said despite his long term as a working journalist he was glad he attended because he gained new writing skills and knowledge about improving his professional performance.

Ms.Parveen Sheikh, a local political and social figure said that the workshop had helped her acquire the skill and ability to write for newspapers .This skill was important for all but more specially for women and should be included in the educational curriculum at the graduation level.

Mr.Ayub Ahmed Chohan, reporter On Line news agency proposed that PPF should hold more such workshops especially for rural journalists who have no chances of any training about journalism. They need more knowledge not merely about writing but also about ethics and laws of journalism.

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. Wajid Raza Butt, the newly elected Nazim of Wazirabad .

In his speech Mr. Wajid Raza Butt praised PPF for having organized the journalism training workshop in Bhakkar. He specially welcomed the measure for having included women in the workshop. He said this is the first time ever that any training facility had been provided to local journalists. Such training would not merely improve their professional performance but also enable them to report with responsibility.

In her speech Mrs Parveen Sheikh expressed the hope that as requested by the participants another workshop of a longer duration will be held in Wazirabad. She promised all logistic support for the workshop as and when requested by the PPF.

The Chief Guest then distributed certificates among the participants.

List of Participants
Miss. Samina Fatima
Newspaper Chief Editor
Mr. Tahir Hussain Wazirabadi
Roznama Khabran Lahore
Mr. Nayyar Alam
Apna TV Channel
Mr. Niaz Ahmed Chohan
Daily The Nation
Mr. Sh. Salahuddin
Aaj TV
Mr. Sheikh Tariq Amin Khalid
Daily Jang
Mr. Sabir Hussain Butt
Tehsil Reporter
Roznama Express Gujranwala
Mr. Shuja-ul-Haq
Tehsil Reporter
Daily Wafaq
Mr. Waseem hahid
Tehsil Reporter
Daily Insaf Lahore
Mr. Tariq Hasan Nomani
News Line
Mr. Mirza Ghulam Mustafa Mughal
NNI & Roznama Leader
Mr. Zafarullah Nomani
Pakistan Press International(PPI)
Mr. Malik Mohammad Aslam Kalyar
News Network International (NNI)
Mr. Ayub Ahmed hohan
Online News Agency
Mr. M. lam
Post Mortem
Mr. Sheikh Abdul Salam
Crime Reporter
Haftroza Zameer Lahore
Mr. Malik Shakeel Ahmed
Associated Press of Pakistan (APP)
Mr. Abdul Qayyum Bhatti
Special Correspondent
Post Mortem Jazba
Mr. Mirza Taqi Ali
Chief Editor
Haftroza Zameer Lahore
Mrs. Tariq Hasan Nomani
General Secretary
Women Welfare Council
Mrs. Shaheen Malik
Vice Principal
Nausheen Junior Model School
Miss. Parveen Sheikh
Ex. District Councillor
Miss. Nasreen Sharief
Miss Mubin Dar