Social media still in use to spread hate material | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation

Social media still in use to spread hate material

Pakistan Press Foundation

ISLAMABAD – It has been six months now to the launch of National Action Plan (NAP) to eliminate terrorism but hate material continues to pile up on social media.

Total blackout of terrorists on media, destroying of communication system of terrorist organizations and banning of hate material and propaganda to promote sectarianism, extremism and intolerance were among the main points which directly or indirectly involve social media.

The government had launched this plan with consensus of all political parties, after Taliban in a brutal attack on Peshawar army school killed over 141 including 132 children.

But after over six months it seems the government has been occupied in other challenges, as not only banned local terrorist organisations but also internationally banned outfits are making their way among people through social media.

On a post on July 3, the international terrorist organisation ISIS, on its twitter account continued to inspire youth about the global Jehad movement.

All Islamic State in its tweet on July 14, updated its viewers about the battle of Falluja saying thousands of Shia militiamen to join decisive battle to take back Fallujah, said with a link to a video.

Not only international organisations but also local banned outfits also continue to reach locals via social media.

“TTP had targeted one police officer at Nowshera, and two at Baluchistan Yesterday,” said Muhammad Khurasani on his umarmediawordpress page on July 14. The page is updated on almost daily basis.

There are a number of other websites, blogs, facebook pages, and twitter accounts freely spreading religious hatred, some in the name of Islam and some in the name of liberalism.

Minister for Information and Technology, Anusha Rehman, who had been very vocal in supporting cyber crime bill, declaring it solution of all the challenges related to web, now seems to be surprisingly mum after National Assembly Standing Committee chief Captain Safdar in May last had dumped it for an infinite period, apparently on stakeholders’ request.

“She is busy assisting Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif in legal matters and now the matter is with Pakistan Telecom Authority,” said officials of the ministry to this scribe.

After Ministry of IT, the responsibility of managing tons of objectionable material on websites rests with ill-equipped and under staff PTA, which is struggling hard to meet the challenge despite meagre resources.

After the interim order of Islamabad High Court in 2014, on a writ petition, the court had directed PTA to receive and dispose of complaints requiring regulation of contents on internet, an official told the scribe.

He said after the court orders the authority has been receiving loads of complains relating to blasphemy, pornography, impersonation and anti-state, terrorism. He said his department after scrutiny decides to block content; however, they could not take any action against facebook or twitter accounts.

The Nation