News Tech Technology

Pakistan High Court Raises Concerns Over Social Media Management

Pakistan High Court Raises Concerns Over Social Media Management

A recent observation by a high court in Pakistan’s Sindh province has raised concerns about the social media management in the country. The chief justice of the Sindh High Court remarked that social media platforms were prima facie being “managed,” amidst disruptions in service and complaints regarding slow Internet speed.

The remarks were made during the hearing of petitions concerning the disruption of a particular service, referred to as X, and the sluggish Internet speeds. The service first experienced interruptions on Feb. 17 following admissions by a government official regarding election result manipulation in some constituencies. Since then, sporadic disruptions in the service have occurred, alarming netizens.

During the hearing, a lawyer representing the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) claimed they lacked the necessary equipment to throttle Internet speeds. Meanwhile, the interior and telecom ministries requested additional time to provide a response.

Chief Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi expressed concerns about the apparent management of social media platforms but assured that responsible parties would be identified. The court served notices to PTA officials following a petition seeking contempt of court proceedings against the PTA chief over the failure to improve the X service and Internet connectivity.

The hearing of the case has been adjourned until March 20. Pakistan’s recent national election faced allegations of rigging due to mobile Internet shutdowns and delayed results, prompting protests from political parties. The disruption of X service during these protests raised further concerns about democratic freedoms, with international entities urging authorities to ensure unhindered Internet access. Leading digital rights activists have condemned the blockade as a blatant violation of civil liberties.

Also, see:

Government planning to ban major social media platforms in Pakistan