Supreme Court of Pakistan hints at banning YouTube in the country

The Supreme Court of Pakistan hinted at banning the Google-owned video-sharing platform YouTube in the country on Wednesday.

According to the details, the top court of the country hinted at banning YouTube while hearing the case of a man, identified as Shaukat Ali, who was involved in a sectarian crime. Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin and Justice Mushir Alam were members of the bench hearing the case.

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The apex court of Pakistan objected to unregulated content shared on social media, particularly comments regarding the judiciary of the country, the armed forces, and the government of Pakistan.

“We have no objection to the freedom of expression,” remarked Justice Amin. Our salaries are paid from the money of the people of Pakistan, they have the right to raise questions on our decisions as well as on our performance, he said. But the Constitution of Pakistan also grants us the right to privacy, the judge added.

The judge of the Supreme Court Justice Amin remarked that the family members of the judges come under scrutiny on the video-sharing platform YouTube. The judge referred to the decision announced yesterday (Tuesday) which was discussed on YouTube and asked whether the PTA and the FIA had taken the notice of such happenings on the social platform where the judiciary is being mocked and embarrassed.

During the hearing, an official of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) told the Supreme Court that the authority cannot remove the objectionable content but can only report it.

Another judge Justice Mushir Alam said that YouTube is banned in many countries. He asked whether anyone would dare to publish content against the US or the European Union (EU) on YouTube. He further said that social media is regulated through local laws in many countries.

“How many people have been prosecuted for such crimes,” Justice Amin asked saying that the people of the country are incited against the judiciary, the armed forces, and the government of Pakistan.

The court, however, issued the notices to the attorney-general of Pakistan and Foreign Ministry on the matter.

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