No mobile services in Karachi, Quetta till midnight

Published: November 23, 2012
Suspension of services in Islamabad, other cities being considered, says Malik. PHOTO: FILE

Suspension of services in Islamabad, other cities being considered, says Malik. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: Interior Minister Rehman Malik announced on Friday that cellular services will be barred in provincial capitals Karachi and Quetta, today, from 1pm till midnight, Express News reported. Additionally, he said PTCL’s wireless service will also be suspended.

Speaking to the media, Malik said that suspension of services in other parts of the country was being considered and will be announced soon through a press release.

Cellular suspension on 9th and 10th of Muharram

Federal capital

Mobile services have been blocked in Islamabad Sector G.


Advisor to the Home Ministry Sharfuddin Memon while talking to The Express Tribune said that the administration had not yet received a notification regarding barring cellular services on 9th and 10th of Muharram.

Express News reported that the provincial government has requested the federal government to block cellular service in five cities on Ashura.


Although, it has been, in principle, decided that the services will be barred across the areas declared sensitive in the province, the interior ministry was still deliberating over the matter, an official of the interior ministry privy to the matter told The Express Tribune.

The official said that the decision will be taken in a meeting chaired by Malik, which will be attended by Interior ministerial secretaries and officials of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA).

He said that in the meeting, recommendations from provinces and intelligence reports will be discussed, after which, the interior ministry will send directives to the PTA and further telcos will be communicated regarding the matter.

Express News reported that the provincial government has requested the federal government to block cellular service in eight cities on Ashura.


The Balochistan Government has decided that cellular services will be barred across eight districts, including Quetta, which were declared sensitive by the interior ministry.

According to Balochistan’s Home Secretary Akbar Durrani, the Balochistan Government has forwarded a request in this regard to the PTA. He said that the areas in which the mobile phone services will be suspended include Quetta, Bolan, Naseerabad, Loralai and Zhob among others.

He added that a decision to ban motorcycle riding was not yet taken, however, a ban on pillion riding will be imposed.


The province’s Home Department said that no such decision was taken.

Speaking to Express News, K-P’s Home Secretary Azam Khan said that the administration had not received any recommendations for barring cellular services. However, he said, that security will be beefed up across the province.

Malik had said on Thursday that a strategy was being devised for suspending cellular services.

The Government of Sindh has also announced a three-day public holiday on 8, 9 and 10 of Muharram.

All educational and government institutions in Sindh will remain closed on all three days.

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Reader Comments (31)

  • Salman Rajan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 12:29PM

    Why you no block PTCL Landline too ??


  • Asif khan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 12:39PM

    They should shut down wireless phone services also.Why only mobile phones are being closed down? There are over a million sets of wireless phones working in our country.They must also be closed down.Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Nov 23, 2012 - 12:41PM

    The terrorists would not be able to communicate with each other during the course the cellular phone service will remain suspended.

    A good decision taken by the Federal Government.

    This is the only way to stop the terrorists so that they should not implement their nefarious designed plans.

    May Al-Mighty Allah save all Pakistani from these evil forces. Aameen.


  • Paco Osuna
    Nov 23, 2012 - 1:20PM

    Good step taken by interior minister !!


  • Amitabh Bachchan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 1:23PM

    What if the terrorist start using USB internet devices which can provide wifi to mobile apps like tango and viber :D

    Why not just shutdown evthing


  • Qasim
    Nov 23, 2012 - 1:32PM

    Yayy. We are saved. Way to GO RM


  • saad
    Nov 23, 2012 - 1:36PM

    why dont we just shut down Pakistan and live in caves

    No reason to shut down PTCL wireless cause you still can communicate
    from ptcl landline services.


  • Javed
    Nov 23, 2012 - 1:56PM

    This is just rubbish………


  • Mr Khan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 2:19PM

    Well Good decision By Govt as this step proved fruitful in the past so lets hope processions goes peacefully.


  • Javeria Mahmood
    Nov 23, 2012 - 2:34PM

    Curse on all authorities who took this stupid decision….


  • usmn
    Nov 23, 2012 - 2:48PM

    Well its not a stupid decision .. Most of the remote controlled bombs these days are controlled by mobile phone , they are activated on sms or call receiving . So its not all bad decision .. If not having a mobile services for two days saves even a single life then its totally worth it.


  • Tahir Zain
    Nov 23, 2012 - 3:05PM

    If even a single terror attack is foiled then by all means its a good decision. RM’s is a thankless task. When he blocks phone an bikes. he is blamed for creating inconvenience for the people and when terror attacks take place he is blamed for not doing enough..

    Keeping in mind that every time phones have been blocked and there have been a respite from terror attacks then yes I think he has done the right thing.


  • Bored
    Nov 23, 2012 - 3:07PM

    The ban on cell phones is a big security risk and major loss of income for millions (the worse off we are economically, the greater the chance of extremism spreading in Pakistan). Billions of Rupees will be lost today in the form of lost opportunities. What if someone needs an ambulance? What if terrorists attack with guns and grenades instead of remote controlled devices? How will anyone coordinate emergency services? If I see some suspicious activity, how will I report it. Rehman Malik isn’t making the situation better, he is making it worse.


  • MZJ
    Nov 23, 2012 - 3:48PM

    Ofcourse, bringing better law enforcement, clamping down on the terrorists, clean-up operations, all these will only harm his party and its allies right? So why not just burden the common man since he can’t do anything about it but take it lying down? Sign of the end times, incapable people ruling the people.


  • Aneeta
    Nov 23, 2012 - 4:01PM

    and for those who are in favor of this stupid stupid decision think that terrorist can’t find another way? really? you guys think this is the only solution?


  • Sharjeel Jawaid
    Nov 23, 2012 - 4:16PM

    We do expect further idiocincracies!


  • Shahzaib
    Nov 23, 2012 - 4:17PM

    Retards… If they really want to catch the terrorists start monitoring the damn calls (Grey calls), i guess Pakistan has one of the best Intelligence Authority in the world. This is just a childish decision made by interior minister. i guess he doesn’t know the existence of WIFI and Internet Calls. Blocking mobile networks, Midnight packages, YouTube etc is just making the country worse and causing people more pain. Banning Midnight packages just because some Indian news reported the packages available in Pakistan is just insulting your own Nation. No Human rights are available in Pakistan and those limited things that were left for some entertainment are also being banned. Talking about mobile phone controlled bombs, the people who are causing the terrorism could also use alternatives instead (IED’s, Wire, Radio, Victim-operated, Infrared, Surgically implanted). So where this blocking cellular networks is concerned there is just no sense of doing it and causing companies a loss of billions.


  • Vampire
    Nov 23, 2012 - 5:08PM

    Ahhh Now they lost the opportunity of Intercepting some messages and calls today… Today it would have been so easy to intercept communications between these groups and circle the originating areas and crackdown to make massive arrests…

    But only defensive measures we see… No steps are taken to clean them tactically with Govt resources, Technology, Man power and Military Resources.

    Ahhh even a common citizen like me can think on these lines but our Rehman Malik and agencies can’t… Donkeys…!


  • Pakistan One
    Nov 23, 2012 - 5:31PM

    I see this as an opportunity for more terrorist attacks. How? Through car jacking. What this idiot minister does not realize is that vehicle tracking companies also use gsm technology to prevent car thefts. Now that the whole mobile communication system is down, it’s a free run for the terrorists (and car jackers) to rob any vehicle and use it for terrorism. Even if they are not used for terrorism they would be able to cross the border before the networks are back on.

    Hahahahahahaha, so much for intelligence!


  • islooite
    Nov 23, 2012 - 6:53PM

    Dude why don’t we just sack our intelligence agency when only the decisions interior ministry take are banning motorcycles , and cell phone services ? What is wrong with government . jobs of thousands are at stake as a result of PTA directives . we are going back in stone age


  • Pakistan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 7:45PM

    Such a foooooooOOoOoLish Decision…..There are many other mediums for terrorists to communicate…
    Most illiterate and irresponsible persons are running ME (Pakistan).


  • elcay
    Nov 23, 2012 - 9:52PM

    Has Karachi gone quiet? Or have all the mischief makers disappeared? Or has the elec. media and the print media been gagged?Recommend

  • !!!
    Nov 23, 2012 - 9:54PM

    a country formed in the name of islam, but not able to celebrate islamic holy days


  • ALI
    Nov 23, 2012 - 9:57PM

    the terrorist has to win only once,but the govt has to win every time


  • Hamid Hassan Khan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 10:44PM

    Good decision by interior minister as enemies of pakistan trying to devide the nation.

  • hassan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 11:00PM

    @Aneeta: this is not stupid decision at all … han its ryt they r taking short term base solution to ths horrible situation but look at the other side his purpose is jus to cease death casualtys facing poor ppl…soo stop annoying wid him and see positve side too … ofcorse this is not the solution but at least a try n we shuld appreciate it..


  • hassan
    Nov 23, 2012 - 11:03PM

    its not stupid decision at all … we shuld appreciate him …


  • SoniYa
    Nov 24, 2012 - 12:02AM

    Good Decision Rehman Malik. Let dogs bark.


  • Nov 24, 2012 - 12:16AM

    It is good step for protection but the vulnerability still exist and just without mobile and bike there must be some positive step for that.

  • Nov 25, 2012 - 3:51PM

    How many more days this mobile service will going suspended?


  • jamshed
    Nov 25, 2012 - 5:06PM

    very bed decisionRecommend

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