(UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 29th july,2016) Chairman of the Standing Committee on Information and Telecommunication Shahi Syed said it was a very important bill and, in the past, efforts were made to bring a bill in this regard but it could not materialize. He said after listening to all the stakeholders including the media, the bill had come to the House with consensus.

He appreciated the Ministry for extending its full support in incorporating suggestions given by various stakeholders and members of the Committee. Leader of the Opposition Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan said that the bill was being presented in the House after hectic efforts of the senators.

He said around 50 amendments were proposed to the bill passed by the National Assembly. However, he said there was always a room for improvement. He said efforts were made to make the bill State and citizen friendly. Aitzaz said senators proposed better amendments to the bill adding that section was incorporated for parliamentary oversight over the bill besides strengthening of judiciary oversight.

Aitzaz sought unconditional apology to MQM parliamentary leader Col. (Retd) Tahir Hussain Mashhadi for not consulting them and requested them to support the bill rather than abstaining to vote for the bill.

Under the proposed law with certain amendment from the Senate, terrorism, electronic fraud, exaggeration of forgery, crimes, hate speeches, pornographic materials about children, illegal access of data (hacking) as well as interference with data and information system (DOS and DDOS attacks) specialized cyber related electronic forgery and electronic fraud etc will be punishable acts. The bill will also apply on the people who are engaged in anti-state activities online from their safe havens in other countries.

Illegal use of internet data will cost three-year jail and Rs 1 million fine. The same penalties are proposed for tampering with mobile phones.