Pakistan: The Internet Is Under Attack

The danger of an increasing emphasis on blasphemy on social media and the punitive measures designed against it, lapsing into a clampdown on dissent and criticism of powerful segments of the country is also not insignificant.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK desk
Source/Credit: Fair Observer
By Hafsa Khawaja | June 27, 2017

How will Pakistan navigate its blasphemy laws in the murky word of social media?

It has been two months since the brutal murder of 23-year-old student Mashal Khan, who was reportedly accused of insulting Islam. Amid shock and outrage, many hoped that this would mark a turning point for Pakistan. Things had to change after this, they believed.

And indeed there has been a change. There is now official license and pursuit for replications of the ghastly incident: a social-media witch-hunt and increased crackdown on alleged incidents of blasphemy and dissent. Last month, text messages from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority began circulating nation-wide warning that “Uploading and sharing of blasphemous content on Internet is a punishable offence under the law” and calling for such content to “be reported for legal action.”
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