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KARACHI: Once again ordering the restoration of internet services in the country, the Sindh High Court (SHC) on Wednesday sought from the federal government reasons for the suspension of these services on the election day.

During the hearing of a petition against suspension of the internet service in the country, SHC Chief Justice (CJ) Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi remarked, “Why do not you people distribute seats among yourselves instead of holding elections? Enough is enough. It will not go on like this.”

Counsel for the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) informed the court that it was on the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Information orders that the internet was shut down. “In fact, it was feared that the law and order situation might deteriorate if the internet remain functional,” he added.

The chief justice said how unfortunate it was that candidates were not even allowed to run their election campaigns on social media freely. “Then what is the use of holding elections?” he questioned.

Justice Mobeen Lakho inquired from the PTA’s lawyer as to what were the security threats that necessitated the closure of the internet? The lawyer replied that the PTA was not told about the threats in detail.

Counsel for the federal government, on the other hand, said that the services were suspended on the recommendations of the provincial governments.

Addressing the Sindh government lawyer, the CJ asked whether the internet was closed on the provincial government’s order. The lawyer replied in negative, and sought from the court time to submit his reply.

The CJ wondered as to why the court orders were not taken seriously. Later, the court adjourned the case’s hearing until March 5.

It may be mentioned here that the social media platform X remained suspended across Pakistan for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday.

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