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Mobile phone registration: Senate body asks PTA to extend deadline

ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Information Technology has asked Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to extend deadline for blocking unregistered mobile phones in the country.

The Senate body has stated that parties should hold consultation to present applicable solution regarding easy registration process within two weeks.

The committee also raised question that if deadline regarding tax collection could be extended then why mobile phone registration date cannot be extended.

Earlier, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry had announced that all mobile phones smuggled into Pakistan will be blocked after December 31. He said that the government will introduce Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS), which will block stolen and smuggled cell phones, rendering them useless.

The purpose of the DIRBS is to ensure that non-compliant cellphones are not imported, sold, advertised or connected to cellular networks in order to protect cellphone user data across the country.

Fawad Chaudhry said that used mobile phones worth around Rs2.5 billion are illegally brought to Pakistan every year.

The minister stressed the need for encouraging local mobile phone manufacturer, adding the government could also impose a ban on the import of used phones.

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