The Sindh High Court (SHC) has issued a crucial directive, ordering continuous internet access for all citizens until the upcoming general elections on February 8.

In a directive released on Wednesday, the high court explicitly banned authorities from suspending internet services and instructed relevant parties to submit their responses by January 29.

Jibran Nasir, an advocate and committed human rights activist, took the lead by filing a petition with the SHC addressing the persistent issue of internet service suspensions in the country. With political campaigns gaining momentum ahead of the scheduled elections next month, users have experienced multiple instances of internet disruptions in recent days. Notably, there was a second occurrence of social media platform outages on January 20th, affecting platforms like Facebook, X, Instagram, and YouTube.

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Following an extensive disruption just last week, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) attributed the nationwide internet outage to a “technical fault” within its optic fiber network. The recent disruption in internet services was caused by a technical fault, promptly rectified, and internet services have been fully restored nationwide.

Reports from DownDetector, the global web outage tracker, indicated that the outage not only affected Google services but also impacted the operations of the internet service provider PTCL. Advocate Jibran Nasir highlighted how these outages are consistently aimed at censoring Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) election campaigns, emphasizing the party’s need for a fair chance in the upcoming general elections.

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