In a groundbreaking move, the Ministry of Information Technology has unveiled a pioneering policy to provide smartphones to citizens through easy installment plans. This strategic initiative not only facilitates accessibility but also addresses the issue of defaulters through stringent measures.
The Policy Overview
Under this newly finalized policy, citizens can acquire smartphones through convenient installment plans. However, what sets this initiative apart is the strict enforcement against defaulters. The ministry, in collaboration with all mobile companies, aims to tackle the misuse of mobile phones effectively.
Blocking Phones for Defaulters
A key highlight of the policy is the provision to block mobile phones for individuals who default on their installment payments. This decision, endorsed by mobile companies, is a joint effort with the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and will be executed through the Device Identification Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS).
DIRBS: The Enforcer
The DIRBS system, already in use to block unauthorized or smuggled devices, will now play a pivotal role in curbing defaulters’ misuse of mobile phones. The PTA, taking charge of this enforcement, marks a shift from relying solely on mobile companies for implementation.
Streamlined Implementation Process
To streamline and formalize this policy, the Ministry of Information Technology plans to submit it to the Law Ministry for meticulous vetting. Once vetted, the policy will proceed to the federal cabinet for approval. The PTA will then take the reins, ensuring that defaulters face consequences for their failure to meet installment obligations.
While the focus currently centers on blocking mobile phones of defaulters, future considerations include addressing unauthorized SIMs and ID cards. The PTA’s proactive stance underscores the urgency of enforcing measures to regulate the mobile phone landscape effectively.