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Supreme Court Hints at Banning YouTube in Pakistan

Taking notice of the objectionable and obscene content on social media, especially on YouTube, the Supreme Court of Pakistan has hinted at shutting down the video-sharing platform in the country.

While hearing a bail plea of an accused, Shaukat, arrested on charges of sectarianism, Justice Qazi Amin said that the social media has become a place to malign and insult state institutions. He noted that several social media platforms, such as Twitter and YouTube, are filled with hate content.

Even our families are not spared.

He inquired if the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) were aware of what is going on YouTube.

He said that the judiciary had no problem with criticism on its verdicts as it was a constitutional right of the public, and the judiciary runs the public money.

However, our private lives are also protected by the constitution, and no one has a right to slander our families for decisions we made in courts.

He questioned as to why FIA or PTA was unable to take action against such YouTubers. To which the PTA officials said that they could not ban or remove individual content, only it can be reported to YouTube authorities.

Justice Mushir Alam observed that YouTube was banned in various countries across the world, whereas in Europe, and the USA, it is controlled according to local laws.

Try uploading content against America, Israel or European Union

He said that the Apex Court was showing restraint by not taking any stern action against such content makers. However, if authorities do not resolve the matter, the court might order banning the video streaming site.

Justice Qazi Amin said that social media is being used to provoke masses against the country’s army, government, and the judiciary.

How many people who were involved in such activities faced action?

Seeking a response in this regard, the Top Court issued summons to the Attorney General of Pakistan (AGP) and officials of the Foreign Ministry for the next hearing.

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