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by Raza Dotani

April 17, 2015

Dear friends!

Yesterday the PML-N Parliamentarian Maiza Hameed was kind enough to ask for information about the Cybercrime Bill (proposed), or PECB 2015. It will go to the floor of national assembly for voting today.

The government is giving itself sweeping powers to remove or block any content it deems unfit. As Pakistani citizens, we must resist this move to protect our right to use the internet freely as means of expressing ourselves.

Here’s what you, as a citizen of Pakistan can do:

Before the National Assembly passes this bill, please reach out to your public representative that represents your area through text message and inform them that you as a citizen of Pakistan do not accept the draft of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill 2015. The phone numbers of all Members of National Assembly are listed on the National Assembly website for you. Make use of this and become an active citizen like you are supposed to be in democracy so the government does not speak for you and take away your rights. Link:  http://na.gov.pk/en/all_members.php

Sample text message/SMS to your representative:

Dear <name of MNA>, I as a Pakistani citizen am opposed to the proposed Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill 2015, especially section 34, as it restricts my freedom to use the internet. Please oppose it for me. Sincerely, <Your name>.

If the proposed bill is passed:

Political criticism and political expression in the form of analysis, commentary, blogs and cartoons, caricatures and memes will be criminalized.

‘Obscene’ or ‘immoral’ messages on facebook, twitter and other social networks will be made offenses without defining obscenity or immorality.

Posting photographs of any person on facebook or instagram without their permission will be an offence.

Government/PTA will be able to block access or ermove speech not only on the internet but transmittied through any devices.

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theDotani.com is a multi-topic and multilingual blog founded by Raza Dotani, featuring digital marketing, social media management, new media tools, technology, youth opportunities, independent blogs, online shows and podcasts in English, Urdu and Pashto languages.

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