IHC, Islamabad High Court has declared that suspension of mobile networks is illegal in Pakistan. As the federal government time and again suspends the mobile networks for security reasons, it has been declared illegal.
There was a petition filed against suspending cellular services during important events all over Pakistan under the excuse of security. IHC took the decision regarding this petition and gave the verdict that from now on mobile network suspension in Pakistan will be considered illegal. This ruling will be applied all over the country.
There was a report that came in September 2015 called ‘Security v Access: The Impact of Mobile Network Shutdowns’. In the report it was said that one of the reason’s Pakistan’s economy is suffering is the blockage of cellular networks during important events. Now to Pakistan government’s defense, they block network during key events because of security threats. The primary aim of Pakistan government is to protect people against any likely incident during Eid, or Chehlum or Muharram etc.
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The report stated, “However, many experts argue that network shutdowns violate a range of human rights, and are neither necessary nor proportionate responses to potential violent activities. While the debate is often framed around the resulting restrictions to freedom of expression, network shutdowns also impact other rights, including life, access to health services, education, and work.”
Today because of network suspension not only telecom companies and people suffer but also different industries that depend upon mobile service are affected. Ride-hailing companies are gaining popularity in Pakistan but whenever the government suspends mobile services, their business goes down, thus negatively affecting the whole economy of Pakistan and disturbing the normal life of a common person.
Security concerns lead to suspension of cellular services. On all crucial religious and political events services all across the country are suspended. But now IHC has declared it illegal. Is it the right decision or not? Let the people of Pakistan decide.