PTA blocks country's first gay website

Published: September 26, 2013
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Screenshot of queerpk.com.

Screenshot of queerpk.com.

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has blocked access to the country’s first website designed to help gay people meet and support each other, the website said on Thursday.

The www.queerpk.com website, Pakistan’s first online platform for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people to share views and network, opened in July – a move hailed as a step forward for the long-silent community.

On Thursday, the website said it had been shut by Pakistan’s telecoms authority.

“The government would ban anything that is progressive and talks about the rights of minorities,” the website said in an emailed statement. “The government does such things to appease
the extreme-right all the time.”

The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority declined to comment. The website is still available outside Pakistan and features the slogan “Don’t hate us, know us!”

Being gay is illegal in Pakistan where many people believe that being gay is un-Islamic.

The PTA frequently blocks pages it deems as pornographic or against blasphemous.

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Reader Comments (51)

  • Rehan
    Sep 26, 2013 - 8:20PM

    I think being an Islamic Republic Of Pakistan right decision has been made.

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  • Imran
    Sep 26, 2013 - 8:22PM

    Homosexuality is a grave sin in Islam and is punishable by death. It is also a sin in Christianity. Good move by PTA.

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  • EAR
    Sep 26, 2013 - 8:33PM

    Yaayyyy PTA! Always consistent in being pro-regressive.

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  • TTV
    Sep 26, 2013 - 8:35PM

    @Imran:
    Blowing up innocent people is also a grave sin in Islam. I don’t see the PTA blocking any Taliban websites.

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  • Nadir
    Sep 26, 2013 - 8:46PM

    Banning website will end of homosexuality.

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  • good move
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:06PM

    one bad thing cannot be taken as excuse to justify another..Terrorism is bad and so is Gay…

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  • lol
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:07PM

    dats hypocritic considering so many pakistanis actually watch gay sex…. :)

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  • Mj
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:10PM

    Pakistan continues the steady descent towards Talibanization and forcefully fashioning a society based on 7th century ideals.

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  • S
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:18PM

    @TTV can you share any links to taliban website pleasE?

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  • Dilip
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:27PM

    @imraan
    What about some of the mullahs who sodomises children? Have they ever been convicted????

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  • vick
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:32PM

    thts nonsense of Tribune……now they r giving free publicity to dis website, those who were not aware of it will come to know abt it……i dont know wht ET is trying to do to our society

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  • Mj
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:32PM

    @Rehan:
    “I think being an Islamic Republic Of Pakistan right decision has been made.”

    Being an Islamic Republic, they should also legalize slavery. After all, why pick-and-choose?

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  • najaf
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:40PM

    @EAR:
    you liberal minded people think religion is so irrational. It is ideologies like this that make you hate it so much and not want to understand why the rule is there. Its people like you who are possibly worse than homosexuals themselves because you support their actions only when it becomes ‘cool’ or hashtagged enough and certainly not because you believe its right.

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  • Imran
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:42PM

    @Dilip:
    @TTV:
    While one can’t condone those (totally separate) issues, one must also acknowledge that two wrongs don’t make a right.

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  • Ahmed K
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:45PM

    @TTV:
    Kindly share the links and also enlighten us how u know about those sites.

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  • Mubarik
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:45PM

    Great work done by PTA. Hope for such actions in future too.Recommend

  • Khan
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:47PM

    @TTV:
    Are you from India? You obviously know more about Taliban websites than we do.

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  • Moiz Omar
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:48PM

    So PTA is blocking websites advocating the rights of consenting same sex adults, but is cool with websites that promote murder and hate and intolerance?

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  • Midhat
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:50PM

    In PTA’s defense we must consider that they are simply doing their job as outlined in their policies..Homesexulality is illegal in the state so you can’t hold them responsible for acting out in line with the law. So the website was basically illegal. Logically LGBT community can’t really protest untill they get some sort of bill approved for their legal status.

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  • sterry
    Sep 26, 2013 - 9:51PM

    @Dilip: Here in the West, priests are always charged with molesting boys and even the Catholic Church has aplogised for this recurrent problem but this has nothing to do with homosexuality. We are not talking about priests or imams abusing boys; Homosexuality is a life choice and gays should be able to live according to their preference as a minority. I do not support this clamp down at all because it shows lack of respect for minorities. The LGBT community are citizens like anyone else. Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Ahmadiyas, Ismailis, Atheists should all be given the same rights under the law. Same goes for the LGBT ( Lesbian / Gay/ Bisexual and Transgender) community.

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  • Lt Col Imtiaz Alam(retd)
    Sep 26, 2013 - 10:03PM

    Excellent action taken.Recommend

  • Imran
    Sep 26, 2013 - 10:14PM

    @Moiz Omar:
    Do you regularly frequent such websites? Because we seriously cant think of any. Please feel free to share.

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  • rofl
    Sep 26, 2013 - 10:20PM

    @lol:
    And u enjoy it.

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  • Mj
    Sep 26, 2013 - 10:30PM

    @najaf:
    “It is ideologies like this that make you hate it so much and not want to understand why the rule is there. Its people like you who are possibly worse than homosexuals themselves because you support their actions only when it becomes ‘cool’ or hashtagged enough and certainly not because you believe its right.”

    Why don’t you explain and justify why a person should be discriminated against for their sexual orientation. And surely, shouldn’t marrying a child not be worse than consensual relations between two adults?

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  • Mj
    Sep 26, 2013 - 10:32PM

    @Lt Col Imtiaz Alam(retd):

    “Excellent action taken.”

    Why? Are you not comfortable with your own orientation that you have to bring down others for theirs?

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  • hmm
    Sep 26, 2013 - 11:11PM

    Why some people have to bring “Taliban” in every news article which is not even related to them! i have yet to see any supposed “taliban” websites, maybe you guys (Indians & pseudo liberals) are more closer to them than us, that you know so much about them. anyho, great step by PTA.

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  • nadia
    Sep 26, 2013 - 11:58PM

    Terrorism is forbidden in Islam and so is homosexuality….so good step taken by PTA and hopefully they will ban all the other sites and programmes related to terrorism or anything which is strictly forbidden in Islam cuz hellloooo we belong to Pakistan and Pakistan is n Islamic state…. So no to homosexuality and no to terrorism and those who support homosexuality and gays and lesbian rites ….then go to a country who support gays and lesbian rights….no space for such ppl in an Islamic republic….under no circumstances and nooo question abt it

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  • Sep 27, 2013 - 12:07AM

    @MJ Thank you sanity prevails

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  • abc
    Sep 27, 2013 - 12:22AM

    keep changing the name of the website, That is how banned things work.

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  • Muneeb
    Sep 27, 2013 - 12:48AM

    @S, Google Umar media’s FB page, you will get to know how they operate with impunity while PTA indulges in banning porn sites, “rationing” freedom to internet use for better days.

    PS. homosexuality is not something alien to Pakistani society, we all know many gays around us, we just keep mum about it. So, don’t dress up in that cloak of piety.

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  • Muneeb
    Sep 27, 2013 - 12:51AM

    @Najaf, worse than homosexuals? They are human beings and you are a hatemonger.

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  • broken chooza
    Sep 27, 2013 - 1:00AM

    “many people believe that being gay is un-Islamic”
    Any person who knows the abc of Islam knows that its un-islamic. Pakistan’s 98% population are Muslim, also Christians are not allowed to practice this as well.

    So ET doesn’t have an person in its staff that could tell them its un-Islamic, are they are not sure about it ??? LOL

    Btw they are very much sure about the things said by IK. :P

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  • daniyal
    Sep 27, 2013 - 1:16AM

    PTA is doing their job with the limited boundary they are provided,which is commendable. not being judgemental and with due respect to the values of others, if something is illegal in state cannot be seen as a reason to seek sympathy.

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  • sane
    Sep 27, 2013 - 2:00AM

    I have never accepted pakistan as a ideological islamic but democratic state. oppression starts with the strangling of free speech and just like the burning of books in the past, today it’s done by cutting off people’s access to technology. freedom to communicate is a basic right and exploring all options to resolve this matter.Recommend

  • Javed Jehan
    Sep 27, 2013 - 2:07AM

    All of the people who are glad that is website has been banned are grateful to hide their own “queer tenancies” considering that man to man sex has been going on forever in Pakistan now that it has a label they dare protest! Where are all you religious zealots when they are killing innocent people and shooting young girls are you too busy cruising the markets?
    Blaming ET for queers is a huge element of amnesia, homosexuality is not a desired life style and whom do you think bear “homosexuals” they are probably straight parents.
    The Taliban are the main culprits in keeping kidnapped little boys to be used as sex objects after they map their meeting to blow more innocent Pakistani citizens to see some elevate the Taliban and speak against “gays” is indeed comical!

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  • Sep 27, 2013 - 3:26AM

    ET why did you not publish my comments? Recommend

  • Akber Shakil
    Sep 27, 2013 - 3:39AM

    You being gay is your private matter its between you and Allah to whom you’re ultimately answerable for your deeds, as long as you keep it private. If you want to bring out in public I am afraid there are concequences and religious obligation to oppose you.

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  • Me
    Sep 27, 2013 - 3:41AM

    Thank God PTA does something rightRecommend

  • Akber Shakil
    Sep 27, 2013 - 3:55AM

    @Mj:
    One’s sexual orientation suppose to be a private matter and its between him and his creater as long as he keeps it private, but if you wana try to prove something you think is right which is clearly explained to be wrong and unacceptable you should be ready for backlash,

    About its being okay if it between consensual adult argument, every society have put down limits to this otherwise whats wrong in incest if both persons are adults and consensual?

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  • Citizen Kane
    Sep 27, 2013 - 4:31AM

    It’s so disappointing to read the comments here. We are led to believe that the online Pakistani community is liberal and progressive and completely unlike the mobs on the streets but it seems as though they’re nothing but cyber Jihadis.

    Live and let live. What did queerpk ever do to us? It’s meant for people who are homosexual, it’s not meant for us. Let them do whatever they want. Why should it bother us? They’re not asking us to partake in their activities. Why should we interfere in their personal lives?

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  • N
    Sep 27, 2013 - 4:39AM

    Congratulations on all the disgusting and hateful comments here. I try to think there is hope for Pakistan, then I’m reminded it’s full of Pakistanis.

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  • Sabz
    Sep 27, 2013 - 9:30AM

    Good move, permanent ban should be imposed on all present and future offensive websites and culprits should be caught and punished for making such websites in Pakistan.

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  • Sep 27, 2013 - 10:29AM

    Thank you PTA. Salams

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  • The Dude
    Sep 27, 2013 - 4:21PM

    Welcome to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan where cold blooded murderers walk free and rapists cannot be prosecuted unless there were four male witnesses in the audience – thanks to the sharia law – but consenting adults may not conume alcohol or practice consentual sex.

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  • choclet
    Sep 27, 2013 - 5:13PM

    and the talibans are all hetero!!! and what goes on in the madrassahs is anyone’s guess and there are institutions which reflect virility… nothing beats like having the last laugh in this land of impure hypocrites!

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  • Sep 27, 2013 - 6:19PM

    Being gay is unlawful in Pakistan. PTA being the regulatory authority has to work according to its defined framework. Well done PTA!

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  • Umar R.
    Sep 27, 2013 - 9:45PM

    @Press of Pakistan.
    Hype it more. Soon there will be 10 more websites.

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  • Chulbul Pandey
    Sep 27, 2013 - 11:00PM

    @vick: thts nonsense of Tribune……now they r giving free publicity to dis website, those who were not aware of it will come to know abt it……i dont know wht ET is trying to do to our society

    ET is only reporting a news. Are you implying that if some people become aware of the site, they would turn into homosexual? Or, if a bank robbery is reported by ET, the society as a whole will turn into bank robbers?

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  • ashar
    Sep 27, 2013 - 11:19PM

    Good move by PTARecommend

  • Junaid Tipu
    Sep 28, 2013 - 3:32AM

    Honestly guys, live and let live…….if an adult prefers a relationship with one of same or opposite sex, its their mutual decision, not anyones problem. Problem comes when adults start having such relations with kids, we have all known mullahs abusing young boys, and recently otherwise baaghairat men raping young girls and killing them…..

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  • nonya biz
    Sep 28, 2013 - 7:39PM

    Wow! There is so much hatred and intolerance in this country it’s astounding. Proud to be a Canadian!

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