Operators allowed selling three data SIMs per CNIC
ISLAMABAD – The telecommunication service providers were allowed yesterday selling three data SIMs besides five voice mobile electronic cards. Telecom service provider, Zong, had challenged the Supreme Court’s May 2012 order that allowed only five SIMs against one Computerised National Identity Card.
Former chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry hearings a case, pertaining to Balochistan law and order situation, had ordered issuance of maximum five SIMs per one CNIC on 21-5-2012. The service providers’ stance was that the order was for voice cards only.
Shafaqat Jan, representing the Zong, said the company had spent $560 million on the new technology licence and if they were not allowed to sell data SIMs besides the voice cards then his client would suffer huge loss.
Pakistan Telecommunication Authority lawyer said the company is permitted to sell three data SIMs besides five voice SIM cards. However, the authority would review the policy quarterly, he added.
Chief Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali, heading a three-judge bench, said the PTA from time to time would review the policy and it is expected that the authority would allow selling more SIMs without the intervention of the Supreme Court. The court disposed of Zong petition with this order.
The PTA in December 2010 had issued Subscribers Antecedent Verification Regulations, 2010, for the registration and maintenance of accurate data of their subscribers through proper documentation and verification through Nadra database. According to the 2010 Regulations all persons were entitled to purchase in their name up to a maximum of ten SIMs from one operator.
It was changed in 2012 and now a person could buy maximum five SIMs from one operator or more than one different operators.