ISLAMABAD:Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz said on Sunday that provision of financial support to press clubs and deserving journalists across the country was the top priority of the present government. Addressing a ceremony organized at the Press Information Department, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for financial support of various press clubs, he said it was the long-standing desire of Prime Minister Imran Khan to support the deserving journalists and press clubs in the country. The minister said the journalist community had been playing an important role in the development of the country. He said like doctors and medical professionals, journalists were also at the forefront for serving the nation, adding he himself belonged to a literary family so journalists were closer to his heart. He said despite limited resources, the government was trying to provide financial security to journalists and it would continue to work for the welfare of the community. He said the government believed in freedom of the press and would continue to facilitate growth of free and responsible media. Secretary Information and Broadcasting Akbar Durrani said on the very first day of assuming charge as Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibili Faraz asked him how could the ministry provide support to press clubs and journalist community. He said his team had worked day and night to finalize this special assistance programme. He thanked the minister for sparing time for this event and appreciated the journalists representing various press clubs from across the country for attending the event. Principal Information Officer (PIO) Shaheera Shahid who also spoke on the occasion, expressed the hope that journalists would appreciate these efforts being made for them. She said this was very important for the ministry to understand problems of the journalist community and take steps for their resolution. An amount of Rs. 30 million was distributed among the representatives of press clubs from across the country and deserving journalists as individual cases.