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Pakistan temporarily bans PUBG, calls it addictive and wastage of time

After India issued a ban on 59 Chinese apps, Pakistan is tightening the noose on the popular game PUBG.

twitter-logoShubham Verma | July 2, 2020 | Updated 13:48 IST

Highlights

  • Pakistan has banned PUBG and PUBG Mobile in the country.
  • PTA has said the game is addictive and has negative impact on player's health.
  • Pakistan's telecom authority has sought feedback from the public as well.

Pakistan Wednesday announced it is banning the popular battle royale game PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds aka PUBG. The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has said PUBG has been banned after several complaints from different segments of society against the harmful effects of the game on the player's health were received. PUBG has also been cited as one of the reasons for cases of suicide in Pakistan. The temporary ban comes days after India clutched down on 59 Chinese apps and banned them.

"PTA has 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," said Pakistan Telecommunication Authority in a press release shared on Twitter.

The government authority of Pakistan has termed PUBG "addictive" and a "wastage of time" and that it poses "serious negative impact" on the physical and psychological health of players. Some cases of suicide have also been attributed by media reports to the ill effects of PUBG among players, which are under investigation on the orders of Lahore High Court.

PTA has sought feedback from the public by July 10 on whether PUBG should remain under the ban or should it be reinstated for the public. "The Authority also decided to solicit views of the public with reference to the said online game. In this regard public is encouraged to provide feedback through consultation-pubg@pta.gov.pk by July 10, 2020."

PUBG for PC and Xbox and PUBG Mobile have been banned in the country effective immediately. PUBG Pakistan has not released a statement on the development.

Meanwhile, PUBG players in Pakistan have decried the move by the government, terming it unfair and a hurdle to the growth of esports in the country. Some have criticised the government for not banning TikTok and have gone ahead to make references to India's blanket ban on ByteDance's TikTok and other apps.

Earlier this week, India banned TikTok and 58 other apps that had some connotation with China, a country the Modi government is currently dealing with over the recent faceoff at the LAC. However, PUBG escaped unscathed from the ban, which is believed has something to do with the game's different origins. PUBG was developed in South Korea by PUBG Corporation and has different versions for different platforms. The mobile version of PUBG, called PUBG Mobile, is published by Tencent, a Chinese colossus that owns a huge part of the country's Internet catalogue. India has not said anything on PUBG Mobile as of now.

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