As per the directives issued by the Directorate of Public Instructions (DPI) Colleges, the college teachers from Punjab will not be allowed to use social media platforms or conventional media to express themselves. For this, DPI colleges Punjab has issued guidelines to all the public sector divisional director colleges and principles regarding the use of social media by the government servants, another step against granting freedom of Speech in Pakistan.
The notification issued states that using social media by government servants is against the rules of services and under the rules, the government servants are not allowed to take part in any media platform unless he gets permission from the government.
A new Hurdle to freedom of Speech in Pakistan
The notification further enlightened the fact that rule number 18 of service banks individuals from sharing information or documents with someone who is not authorized to receive it. Furthermore, rule number 22 bans people from making statements or sharing their opinion that can embarrass the government in any way.
“One can not share opinion any document published or in any communication made to the press or in any public utterance or television programme or radio broadcast delivered by him or her”.
Also, the notification said that rules 21, 25, 25-A and 25 B of the Rules bar a “government servant from expressing views against ideology and integrity of Pakistan or any government policy or decision”.
While we understand that no organisation allows its employees to speak anything that is against the company or shatters its image, the government is not doing anything different. But with this notification, I totally understand that why Pakistan lag behind other countries for internet freedom.
When people living here are not allowed to speak their heart out, what’s the point of using the platforms which were actually meant for expressing yourselves? I understand sometimes some organisations ban their employees from sharing any information regarding the company however when it comes to teachers what lapse do we expect? It seems that government do not want teachers to express themselves regarding the new teaching methodologies and courses recently introduced. That is why this notification is abruptly introduced.
What are your views regarding it?