ISLAMABAD – The National Assembly Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecommunication was informed that the Pakistan Telecom Authority had taken action against 188 websites for uploading blasphemous material.
The meeting was held in the Parliament House under the chair of Syed Ali Raza Abidi because Chairman Committee Captain Safdar could not attend the meeting due to some personal engagements.
PTI Chairman Dr Ismail Shah briefed the committee about the actions taken by PTA against the blasphemous material on social media. He said PTA has received 9,000 applications against blasphemous material and the authority monitored more than 7,000 websites .
He said PTA has blocked 3,025 sites on the recommendations of IT ministry. He said the cases of websites which were involved in uploading the blasphemous materials and applications have referred to Federal Investigation Agency and other relevant departments for further action against them.
Nobody from the FIA attended the meeting when the committee sought response from the FIA about their action against the blasphemous material on social media.
The committee showed its displeasure regarding FIA management not attending the meeting and directed that FIA officials must attend the next meeting and brief the committee about the blasphemous material.
The committee directed chairman PTA to launch public awareness through media that who we could get rid of the curse of “Blue Whale Game”.
The departmental representative from Universal Services Fund (USF) briefed the committee about their performance during the financial year 2017-18.
They said that all districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be linked with fiber optics in next 16 months and even all tehsils of Balochistan have also been linked with fiber optics. They said the USF has spent 70 percent of funds spent in Balochistan in last year. The committee appreciated the performance of the USF.
Thereafter, the representative of Special Communication Organisation (SCO) briefed the committee about their performance during the financial year 2017-18 along with they showed their some grievances with the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication.
The committee appreciated the performance of SCO and directed the Ministry that SCO may be treated equally as per other private national or international organizations. Further, the committee directed that in next meeting of the Committee SCO may be taken on Agenda.
The committee took up the TIP employee’s issues and directed that TIP employee’s issue will also be taken on next meeting agenda.
The committee unanimously confirmed the minutes of its previous meeting held on 12th July, 2017.
Replying to a question, Chairman PTA informed that 500 towers of mobile companies have been closed by security guards few days back.
The committee has summoned the representatives of mobile companies to get briefing on taxes about mobile cards and other heads in next meeting. The MNAs Mehar Ishtiaq Ahmad, Zahra Wadood Fatemi, Sardar Kamal Khan Chang, Amjid Ali Khan, Engineer Dawar Khan Kundi, Shahjehan Muneer Mangrio and Muhammad Tufail attended the meeting. The senior officers from the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication, PTA and SCO also attended the meeting.