Telenor has challenged the suspension of mobile phone service on Muharram 1st in Karachi in the Sindh High Court (SHC).
The SHC, hearing a petition filed by a cellular service company, has directed the relevant authorities to appear before the court on November 22 along with their comments.
It issued notices on Monday to the Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA), Ministry of IT and Telecom Ministry, Deputy Attorney General on a petition pertaining to possible ban of mobile phone service.
The suspension of mobile phone services has become regular practice of the government to control terrorist attacks and law and order situation in the big cities. Advisor to Interior Ministry, Rehman Malik indicated the temporary closure of services on Muharram 9-10.
The government has earlier suspended services of mobile phone companies for four times in the last four months that caused them losses of nearly Rs1,200 million.
It said that the ban is a move against militants who are using the mobile phones as detonators in IEDs. On the other hands, masses lives and commercial activities got disturb due to this ban.
Telenor seems bold among all cellular operators going into litigation to challenge any action by government or its authority in the past.
Earlier it challenged PTA’s penalty on poor Quality of Services and EOBI for “non-payment of its dues” on the account of staff pension fund.
Interestingly it opted to go SHC which earlier issued a verdict that cellular phone services will be suspended by the call of President of Pakistan only.
SHC also revoked the orders of the federal government to ban motorcycle riding on Muharram 1st.
Telecom experts said that cellular companies move towards going into litigation is last resort after all options have been finished at their ends. They said that the government awkward directives are destroying their business and investment in the country, hence a strong action had to be taken rightly to protect the sector.