Is Pakistan government planning to change weekly holiday to Friday from March 1?
ISLAMABAD - An image of Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan has been shared thousands of times in multiple Facebook posts which claim the Pakistani government plans to change the country's weekly holiday from Sunday to Friday starting from March 1, 2020. The image was shared in a screenshot of a purported television news bulletin. The claim is false; the government denied it was preparing to implement the change and said that no such proposal was under consideration; the purported television news bulletin was not produced by an official broadcaster in Pakistan.
The claim was made in this link post published on February 11, 2020. It has been shared more than 9,600 times.
The post’s caption, which is written in Urdu and Arabic, translates to English as: “Holiday of holy Friday. Hello and welcome.”
The post also features an image of a purported breaking news bulletin from ZSN News link, an unverified Facebook page which lists one phone number as its sole point of contact.
The image includes a photo of Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan link and the following reporting: “From March 1, Sunday holiday is being discontinued. There will be half day on Thursday and holy Friday will be a complete holiday. Notification has been issued. Prime Minister Imran Khan.”
Below is a screenshot of the misleading Facebook post: Screenshot of the misleading Facebook post
The claim is false. Firdous Ashiq Awan link, a government spokeswoman and a Special Assistant to the Prime Minister, denied that the weekly holiday in Pakistan would change from Sunday to Friday.
“Such a decision is taken by the Federal Cabinet and so far there is no proposal before it about changing the weekly holiday,” Awan told AFP on February 26, 2020 by phone.
ZSN News is not listed as an official broadcaster in Pakistan by the state media regulator, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) in this link official document.
The image of Khan in the misleading posts has been taken from this link profile on the Pakistan government website.