Access denied: As YouTube remains blocked, SHC dismisses plea for ban

Published: March 29, 2013
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In his plea, Rana asked interior ministry to block YouTube, following appearance of clips of the film, Innocence of Muslims. PHOTO: FILE

In his plea, Rana asked interior ministry to block YouTube, following appearance of clips of the film, Innocence of Muslims. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: As the ban on the video sharing website, YouTube, remains intact six months after an amateur film forced the government to block it for public access, the Sindh High Court (SHC) dismissed a plea asking the same.

Rana Faizul Hasan, the general secretary of the United Human Rights Commission, had taken the federal ministries of foreign affairs, interior, Sindh’s chief secretary, home secretary, American Ambassador in Pakistan and others to the court.

In his plea, Rana had sought a direction for the interior ministry and others concerned to block YouTube, following appearance of clips of the film, Innocence of Muslims, which aimed to ridicule the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH).

“YouTube is becoming a source of distraction for the young people, as it contains a large number of immoral videos,” he argued. “A recent example is the clips from the blasphemous movie in September last year which hurt sentiments of Muslims as well as sparked anger and protests in the country.”

He asked the court to order the concerned authority to block access to the videos-sharing website in the country on permanent basis.

On Wednesday, when the plea came up for hearing before a division bench, Chief Justice Mushir Alam observed that since the ban had already been imposed on YouTube by the government, there was no need for further orders. The plea was dismissed.

Correction: An earlier version of this article described the film as “immature”. This has been changed to “amateur”.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (4)

  • Concerned
    Mar 29, 2013 - 6:48AM

    This is real foolishness. The same attitude when the printing press was first conceived.

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  • Salman
    Mar 29, 2013 - 12:55PM

    Yes, block everything, we live in a society in which instead of fixing the problem, government bans the consumption. That shows how effective our leaders are, taking our generation to a backward era. The government could easily block the video which contained blasphemous movie but no, ban everything. No one really knows how useful it is for students, particularly for A levels.

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  • Atif Kiani
    Mar 31, 2013 - 11:04PM

    Stop blocking the whole site, just block the concerned video.

    Seems the a government that not only sponsors terrorism but consists of the corrupt feudal people, confirmed fake degree holders, and convicted criminals is now trying to teach Morality to the youth ! this is nothing but a joke.

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  • aisha haider
    Apr 17, 2013 - 11:39PM

    They blocked it ever since it bought to light the planted interview against the chief justice.

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