The Islamabad High Court has dismissed writ petitions and appeals filed by Long Distance and International (LDI) telecommunication operators against the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecom on the issue of payment of access promotion contribution for the Universal Service Fund.
According to a statement released by the PTA Zonal Office Karachi, in the petitions the LDI operators had challenged the legality of access promotion contribution and enforcement orders and show-cause notices issued by PTA.
PTA said a huge amount of access promotion contribution for the Universal Service Fund had been stuck due to stay orders obtained by the operators and pending litigation. However, this is now payable and PTA has issued orders for recovery of the amount.
PTA said it had also suspended licences of WorldCall, Multinet, Red Tone, Wisecom and 4B Gentle with immediate effect, which were earlier stayed by courts.
In the case, the LDI operators had called for declaring Access Promotion Rules 2004 ultra vires and declaring without lawful authority and having no legal effect all the demands raised and money received by the government and PTA in respect of access promotion contribution.
PTA said the court, after hearing arguments of both petitioners and respondents, declared that the points and issues raised in the petitions were not maintainable and dismissed the petitions.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 2nd, 2011.
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