IHC inquires whether company owning PUBG given right to hearing or not

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday asked the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) whether the company owning the online game Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) was given the right to the hearing of the case per the law or not.

During the hearing today, the lawyer of the company owning PUBG told the court that they would appear during the hearing of PTA on July 9.

After hearing this, Justice Amir Farooq adjourned the hearing of the case till July 13, next Monday.

PTA temporarily bans PUBG

Last week, PTA temporarily banned PUBG, an online battle game, for being “addictive” and detrimental to players’ health.

The “PTA had received numerous complaints against PUBG wherein it is stated that the game is addictive, wastage of time and poses serious negative impact on physical and psychological health of the Children,” the regulatory body had said in its statement.

It added that the decision came on the back of complaints received from different segments of society as well as media reports claiming “cases of suicide attributed to PUBG game”.

PUBG ‘under scrutiny’

Last month, local media had reported that a teenager reportedly died by suicide in Lahore’s Hanjarwal neighbourhood after he “missed his mission” assigned in PUBG.

Top police officials had said the young boy “took the extreme step for not completing his task while playing the online game”, a local media outlet had said. It quoted the superintendent of police (SP) for operations in Lahore’s Saddar, Ghazanfar Syed, as saying: “We found his mobile phone on the bed with the PUBG game on at that time near his body.”

“It was purely a case of addiction as the boy used to play PUBG game for many hours a day,” the police officer had explained. “The PUBG has been under scrutiny for being a violent game and due to this, many countries are thinking of banning it.”

Prior to that, a 20-year-old had also died by suicide the same month in Lahore’s Saddar Bazaar area. The young man’s parents had stopped him from playing the online game, police had said.