Tanveer Sarwar, a resident of Lahore, has filed a petition in the Lahore High Court to impose a ban on the video game PUBG. He said it is fueling violence in the minds of young people.
The request stated that PUBG has become a serious life and health threat to users and causing hardships to families of players. If it is not immediately banned, the game will ruin our young generation.
Sarwar reasoned that the World Health Organisation has declared gaming addiction as a mental health disorder. "Addiction to video games increases depression and anxiety levels. Known outcomes of playing PUBG are a strain on the eyes, frazzle, migraine, obesity, poor sleep, violence, and more. Psychological health issues are there too such as withdrawal (irritability, poor sleep, anger) depression, insomnia, and even substance abuse as a result of compulsive disorder."
He recommended that the restriction should be imposed on the gaming app under the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973. The petition has named the government, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority, and Pakistan Telecommunications Authority respondents in the case.
"There is no law for regulating online games in Pakistan while in our neighbouring country like India laws have been enacted to regulate online games. It is need of the hour to promulgate laws for regulating online gaming and a direction could be issued to the respondents to frame laws regulating online gaming like other countries," the petition added.
Earlier, the Punjab police, too, decided to write to the provincial and federal governments requesting a ban on dangerous video games. The discussion began when the news of a teenager shooting his family for restricting him from playing PUBG started doing rounds. He has been arrested and a case has been registered against him.
This is, reportedly, the fourth such crime related to video games in Lahore. The first case emerged in 2020. In the last two years, three young players died by suicide and the police in its reports declared PUBG as the reason behind the deaths.