Feb 8 Elections: PTA Assures No Internet Disruption
In an official announcement, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has affirmed that there will be no disruption in internet services during the upcoming Election Day on February 8. The authority has assured the public that uninterrupted internet services will be maintained for customers throughout the country. The statement from PTA clarified that the government has not issued any directives mandating the suspension of internet services on the day of the polls.
This clarification comes in response to concerns raised by various rights groups, including Amnesty International, urging Pakistani authorities to guarantee continuous internet services and access to digital communication platforms during the February 8 elections. The human rights organizations made this plea in light of the temporary slowdown of internet services and the blocking of major social media platforms by Pakistani authorities preceding the polls.
Amnesty International, expressing apprehension over the suspension of internet services, emphasized the importance of upholding the right to freedom of expression. The organization called for ensuring that citizens have the ability to freely share and access information online, highlighting the significance of unrestricted digital communication during the electoral process.
Earlier on the same day, Amnesty International, along with other rights groups, had called on Pakistani authorities to take measures to prevent any disruption in internet services, emphasizing the critical role of online platforms in facilitating the exchange of information and opinions, particularly during crucial events such as elections.
The clarification issued by the PTA serves to allay concerns and affirm the commitment to providing seamless internet services to the public on Election Day. The rights groups’ plea underscores the broader significance of safeguarding digital freedoms and ensuring an open and accessible online environment, particularly in the context of democratic processes such as elections. As the February 8 elections approach, the assurance from the PTA regarding uninterrupted internet services aims to foster an environment conducive to the free flow of information and expression, crucial elements in the democratic exercise of voting.