PTA Lays Out Guidelines for Overseas Pakistanis
Mobile phone subscriber identity module (SIM) cards outside the country but not availing international roaming will be blocked after April 12 if not verified by the due date.
A telecom regulator said that mobile companies shall make arrangements to ensure that the SIM is not issued to any other subscriber for a period of one year from the date of blocking.
Giving further details, the PTA said overseas Pakistanis whose SIMs are in Pakistan shall be advised by their service providers to carryout ‘Change of Ownership’ to the names of family members as per the procedure. One additional proof of relationship with the owner shall be seen and recorded by mobile companies for references, according to the PTA.
The telecom regulator, however, was flexible for subscribers who are availing international roaming – with the exception of those in Afghanistan – providing the latter with the option of ‘Temporarily Verified’.
Mobile companies should ask overseas Pakistanis who are on international roaming, except Afghanistan, to get their SIMs re-verified, the PTA said. The verification shall include information such as CNIC, mother’s name and place of birth – this information should be verified by the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA). If verification is successful, CNIC and SIM numbers registered against it shall be tagged as ‘Temporarily Verified’ till the return of the CNIC holder to Pakistan.
The PTA, however, fixed March 31, 2016 as the deadline for blocking of temporary verified SIMs, if not verified through BVS by that time.
For overseas Pakistanis in Afghanistan, verification shall be carried out as per the same procedure (Change of Ownership) as that for SIMs present in Pakistan.