The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) announced on 2nd February that it will block Wikipedia if it does not remove anything deemed sacrilegious within 48 hours.
According to a statement, the PTA has ‘degraded’ the platform’s services for failing to comply with an earlier directive to remove ‘illegal’ content.
Though PTA did not comment on measures taken. Adding more, the PTA made it clear that if Wikipedia fails to remove the content in question, it ‘will be prohibited within Pakistan’.
Earlier on 1st February, PTA released an official statement regarding the notification under applicable law and a court order was provided to the services alongside an option for a hearing.
“PTA has impaired Wikipedia services in the country since sacrilegious content is not blocked or removed. The contents in question were requested to be blocked or removed from Wikipedia in accordance with applicable law and court order(s). A hearing opportunity was also granted, but the platform neither removed the blasphemous content nor appeared before the Authority “Pakistan Telecom Authority issued an official statement in an official release.
“Given the intentional failure on part of the platform to comply with the directions of PTA, the services of Wikipedia have been degraded for 48 hours with the direction to block/remove the reported contents,” the official notification continued.
In the past too, Pakistan has taken action against several social media platforms for disseminating content deemed blasphemous.