Harmeen Obaid-Chinoy, graduate of Pakistan Press Foundation’s journalism training programme, wins her second Oscar

Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, a graduate of six-week journalism training programme organised by Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF), won her second Academy Award on 28th February for her film ‘A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness’ in the category of Best Documentary (Short Subject).

The film is about a 19-year-old Pakistani girl who survives an attempted honour killing for marrying a man without her family’s approval. In 2012 Chinoy won first Oscar for `Saving Face’, a documentary on women who suffer acid attacks.

Pakistani Prime Minister Sharif who had earlier met Chinoy and pledged to bring legislation to end honour killing said his government was in the process of pushing a law to stop the killings “Women like Ms Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy are not only a pride for the Pakistani nation but are also a significant source of contribution towards the march of civilisation in the world,” he said in a statement.

More than 500 men and women died in honour killings in 2015, according to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP).Most were never prosecuted.

Photo: http://www.pakistanpressfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/PPF-Sharmin-Obaid.jpg

Participants of the journalism training programme organised by PPF from April 15-23, 1998 visited Ghanwa Buhtto, head of Pakistan Peoples Party (Shaheed Bhutto) political party. Photo shows Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy standing in front row next to Arnold Zeitlin, course trainer and visiting Knight Fellow.

Her passion of journalism and social issues was evident from the very start when she distinguished herself at the six-week journalism training programme organised by PPF in 1998. The course was taught by senior American journalist Arnold Zeitlin, who conducted a series of trainings in Pakistan as a Knight Fellow attached to PPF. Recalling her student Zeitlin said “ I’d like to say I taught her all she knows, but the reality is that I have learned a great deal from her. She is a remarkable talent.”

About Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) is an independent media documentation and training centre, non-governmental organisation committed to promoting and defending freedom of expression.

PPF was established in 1967 as a non-profit organization and continued working until 1974, when it had to suspend operations due to the political environment then prevailing in the country. It was reactivated in 1992, and has since been involved in assisting the development of independent media in Pakistan by conducting training program for journalists, carrying out projects in research and documentation and campaigning to defend and promote freedom of the press.

The aim of the PPF is to establish an effective network of media and journalists throughout Pakistan to gather and document information concerning violations against the press so that they may be able to monitor and defend freedom of expression.

PPF help to raise the standard of journalism in Pakistan and to promote and defend freedom of expression in Pakistan and internationally through the media, greater awareness of social and development issues and to encourage research on mass communication in Pakistan.

PPF organizes media training program and seminars, in rural centers as well as in the cities on issues facing by Pakistani media. The organization has worked for the improvement of professional skills, and in helping to raise journalists’ awareness on professional, social, political and human-rights issues as well as those related to the environment.