PTA Warns Social Media Users of Severe Punishments under Blasphemy Laws

In a public notice, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) highlighted the provisions of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) concerning the blasphemous content. So, anyone involved in uploading, sharing, and propagating blasphemous content on the internet could be subjected to severe punishments.

The relevant sections of the PPC include Section 295 A, which addresses actions intended to outrage religious feelings. Violations of this section can result in up to ten years of imprisonment, a fine, or both. Section 295 B deals with the defiling of the Holy Quran and carries a punishment of imprisonment for life. More severe is Section 295 C, which pertains to derogatory remarks against the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and other Holy Prophets. This offense is punishable by death or imprisonment for life, along with a fine. Additionally, Sections 298, 298 A, and 298 B cover intentional harm to religious feelings and derogatory remarks against holy personalities, with penalties of up to three years of imprisonment, a fine, or both.

To combat the spread of unlawful online content, the government encourages social media and internet users to report any such materials under Section 37 of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA). Reports can be made to the respective social media platforms or directly to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) through their online portal or the PTA CMS App.

For more information and to file a complaint, users can visit the PTA complaint portal at https://complaint.pta.gov.pk/RegisterComplaint.aspx. The government remains committed to upholding religious sanctity and ensuring that blasphemous content is swiftly addressed and removed.

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