Pakistan: Fired TV host Maya Khan claims controversial episode was a set-up
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Pakistan: Fired TV host Maya Khan claims controversial episode was a set-up

Maya Khan, a TV show host in Pakistan who got fired after a controversial episode of her ‘Subah Saweray Maya kay Sath’ show, has revealed that dating youths she raided in public parks on the show were actually paid actors.

She had faced extreme criticism, especially from rights activists, for intruding privacy of people.

In the live episode Khan, along with other ladies, chased dating couples in public parks in Karachi and asked questions about their relationship with each other and questions such as whether their family members were aware of their meeting at a park.

This episode had also led to heated debate over role and responsibility of media. There were  reports in local as well as international media about the particular episode, highlighting grievances of the people over role and responsibility of media. After great public pressure, management of the news channel had to fire her in January this year.

However on Frontline, a programme of Express News channel, on Monday night Ms Maya Khan revealed that the dating youth shown in the morning show were actually paid actors therefore there was no question of intruding privacy. The former host was a bit tearful while justifying the episode, saying she did that particular episode based on complaints she received from the public, especially worried parents.

According to a report of the Express Tribune newspaper, Maya Khan, while criticizing the media and civil society for ganging up on her, said she was never given a chance to present her side of the story. The report quotes Maya Khan as saying:

I have been under house arrest ever since the media outcry against my show started. I am abused through phone calls, text messages and via Facebook.