The National Assembly Standing Committee on Information and Technology has passed the Cyber Crime Bill 2015, we have learned.
The controversial bill was passed by the committee after a sub-committee gave its input on the bill and presented it before the standing committee.
Standing Committee Chairman Capt (r) Safdar informed the members that more than 205 objections from different people were raised during the creation of the bill and, according to him, all such objections were addressed in positive way.
However, the fact is that the approved bill brought no changes and is as it was when put on hold by the ministry to get public opinion.
According to Chairman, new amendments proposed in the bill are aimed at making the bill compatible with anti-terrorism and anti-money laundering laws.
Approved copy of Cyber Crime Bill can be downloaded from here
As mentioned before, there’s almost no change in the bill since it was shelved and was put on hold after severe criticism, and it was said that bill will be re-introduced after incorporating public input and proposals from the public.
After 205 objections, countless protest and severe criticism, standing committee made following changes in the bill that was approved yesterday:
- Minor age is now 13 years instead of 10
- ISPs exclude cafes and places which provide internet. Previously internet cafes and even WiFi hotspot providers were termed as ISPs and were bound to keep usage data and logs for one year before discarding them.
- Cyber stalking punishment reduced to 1 year, previously it was 2 years.
- Rest of the bill is all same
Approved bill by Standing Committee proposes a maximum punishment of 14 years in prison and Rs 50 million fine for cyber terrorism and as young as a 13 year old can be jailed for committing cyber crime.
It merits mentioning here that only Chairman of the Committee had the final copy of the approved bill and none of the members were reportedly shared any draft before the approval.
Owais Ahmed Khan Leghari even protested on the matter and said that an approved draft of the bill had not been shown to the members.
It is hard to comprehend that why Ministry had scrapped the bill earlier when no public input was to be incorporated.
Bill is now likely to be tabled in National Assembly where, after required approvals, it will be passed and will get implemented as a law.