The Bangladesh High had passed an order on 16th August, to ban several online applications including PUBG and Free Fire for 3 months. The order not only initiates in putting a stop to these popular game titles but also other online platforms such as tiktok, like, and Bigo Live. The High Court directs immediate imposition of restrictions on the alleged online games and apps as they are the cause for unhealthy addiction and degradation of children’s mental health. The apps shall no longer be continued in Bangladesh until further orders are issued by the court.
Bangladesh HC Ban Order
According to the report by the Daily Star, The High Court bench of Justice Mozibur Rahman Miah and Justice Kamrul Hossain Mollah surfaced with a rule and order following a writ petition filed, seeking necessary directives. The rule asked the authorities concerned with the government to explain in a time span of 10 days as to why their inaction to stop such ‘destructive’ games and apps should not be declared illegal. The notice has been sent to relevant authorities seeking answers to why a high level committee should not be formed to scrutinize the matter.
The above said writ petition was submitted on June 24 by two Supreme Court lawyers, Mohammad Humayun Kabir Pallob and Mohammed Kawsar to the HC as Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on behalf of rights organisation Law and Life Foundation. They also requested the HC to look into the matter concerning money laundering using such game applications, also urging the HC to form a committee of technologists, educationists and lawyers to recommend Bangladesh Telecommunication and Regulatory Commission (BTRC) for banning games and apps that have turned out harmful for the youngsters.
Depending upon another hearing after the respondents to the above mentioned rule have explained their proposition, the HC will finally consider their decision whether to ban these apps permanently. As of now, the Bangladesh HC has already asked the Chairman of BTRC to ban the alleged applications for three months.
As to there is no clarity whether the ban is permanent or not, this comes as a huge setback for the eSports community in Bangladesh. PUBG and Free Fire being one of the most followed game titles have made their mark all across the world, providing a new high to all the esports enthusiasts.
The PUBG Mobile National Championship (PMNC) 2021 concluded in Bangladesh recently crowning Venom Legends as winners, featuring a prize pool of $30,000. Although these games provide a strong platform for esports players to shine on a global level, it also cannot be neglected how these games scar the minds of youngsters damaging their values and ethics. It is also eminent how few other nations have also adopted similar action for similar reasons.
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