ISLAMABAD: The government ordered the Ministry of Information Technology (MoIT) and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to take strict action against anyone who propagates sectarianism via social media or mobile phones, Express News reported on Monday.
Social media will be monitored for controversial statements that could lead to sectarian conflicts and measures will taken against those who spread such content.
The government also asked the FIA to investigate the issue and ordered them to take action against people who are involved in spreading such statements.
The government’s decision comes after conflicts in Rawalpindi left nine people dead and over 80 injured on November 15. A curfew was imposed in the area and was lifted earlier today.
The tragedy had occurred as a mob turned against the police in the procession passing through Raja Bazaar in Pindi. As mourners massed, a group of miscreants had reportedly snatched guns from police personnel installed in the area for security, and opened fire.
Unknown people had also set a portion of the cloth market in Raja Bazaar on fire. The situation had soon gotten out of hand and the army was called in to control the situation.
Many proscribed groups have social media accounts, through which they spread hate speech, specifically against Ahmadis and Shia Muslims.
Earlier this year in October, the Sindh government had announced it would ban instant messaging and voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) clients Skype, Viber and other communication networks because terrorists were reportedly using them to plot terrorist attacks.
In 2012, Facebook had shut down an account made by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) to recruit enthusiasts to write for a quarterly magazine.
TTP spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan had confirmed to AFP by telephone that the faction was “temporarily” using the page “to fulfil its requirements” before launching its own website.