GILGIT: The federal government on Wednesday decided to extend the 3G and 4G internet facility to the Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

According to a press release issued by the Federal Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan, the launch of 3G and 4G internet facility in the two regions was discussed during a high-level meeting held at the ministry in Islamabad. 

Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Chaudhry Barjees Tahir chaired the meeting, which was attended by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) chairman Dr Ismail Shah, member telecom of federal ministry for information technology Mudasir Hussain, federal secretary of the Kashmir affairs and GB Abid Saeed, additional secretary AJK council Ameer Ashraf, joint secretary GB council Ajmal Gondal and other relevant officials.

Speaking at the meeting, Barjees Tahir said that owing to the absence of modern internet facilities in the AJK and GB, people of the two regions could not develop their skills in different sectors, especially education and health.

“As a federal minister whenever I visited the two regions, people would demand provision of these facilities,” he said. The minister directed the relevant authorities to completed legal requirements to extend the facility to GB and AJK.

He also told the relevant authorities to make a mechanism for conduct of fair auction of the 3G and 4G in these areas. He said that the facility would be launched soon.

The PTA chairman said that the process for auction of 3G and 4G would be speeded up after issuance of the directives from the GB and AJK councils in this regard.

An official of the ministry told Dawn that during the meeting all the stakeholders agreed to take urgent steps for extending the modern internet facility to the two regions.

Published in Dawn, September 24th, 2015

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