PM orders restoration of Wikipedia

ISLAMABAD, Feb 6 (APP): Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif Monday decided to immediately restore the encyclopedia website Wikipedia.

According to the PM Office, the notification to this effect was issued with the signature of Principal Secretary to Prime Minister Dr Tauqeer Shah.

The prime minister took the decision in the light of recommendations of a three-member ministerial committee including Federal Ministers for Law and Justice, Economic and Political Affairs, and Information and Broadcasting.

The ministerial committee in its meeting reviewed the matter and declared that Wikipedia was a beneficial website used by students, researchers, and other sections of society. It was not appropriate to take down the whole website and steps should be taken for removing objectionable material, they noted.

The PM has now formed a five-member committee for the removal of objectionable material from the website.

The Minister for Information Technology would lead the committee and ministers for Law and Justice, Information and Broadcasting, Commerce and Communications would be its members.

In case of need, an expert could be included in the committee, which would present its report to the federal cabinet within a week.

The committee would review the step taken by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to stop access to Wikipedia.

The committee would suggest measures to ban objectionable material and stop access to such content.

The committee would also suggest ways for banning content that was against social, cultural and religious norms and sensitivities.

Ministry for Information Technology would provide secretarial services to the committee.