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Pakistan

Social media platforms restored in Pakistan after a brief shut down

  • Several social media services were shut down from 11 am to 3 pm.
  • PTA said it was done on the orders of the Interior Ministry to maintain public order and safety.
16 Apr 2021

After being suspended for four hours, social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, and Telegram have been restored all over the country.

On Friday, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) had blocked several social media platforms from 11 am to 3 pm on the directive of the federal government. A letter was sent by the Interior Ministry to the PTA chairman directing the regulator to block the services of social media websites.

The letter had requested the PTA to immediately take action and ban the mentioned platforms. To comply with the order, Akamai, Facebook, and Google were shut down and many other Google services including Meet were affected too.

PTA explained the suspension of services through a notification.

“In order to maintain public order and safety, access to certain social media applications has been restricted temporarily.” The directive was issued amid protests by a religious party, TLP in the country which led to chaos and the killing of six people, including four policemen.

The protests, organized in different cities, also caused massive traffic jams and distress to the citizens. Subsequently, the government decided to blacklist Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) as a terrorist organization under 11B (1) of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.