Here’s why Meezan Bank Blocked Netflix Payments

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Meezan Bank calls Netflix a ‘Non-Shariah’ application.

Due to a certain restriction, Netflix members were no longer able pay their monthly payments using Meezan Bank, forcing them to seek out alternative payment methods.

When the bank’s Shariah Scholars objected to its consumers paying Netflix, the service was discontinued.

According to the official statement:

As per the regulations and Shariah Compliance Guidelines of State Bank of Pakistan, Meezan Bank cannot provide any product or service that is not in line with the guidelines of Shariah Compliance. Netflix, an online subscription service for movies and videos, also falls under the category of entertainment services that are not allowed in Sharia. (It is not a mixed content platform), hence based on customer complaints and after compliance review, the bank was required to block Netflix as part of its regulatory and Shariah Compliance requirement.”

The terms and conditions of a debit card prevent its use on non-compliant products or services, just like credit card users are required to abide by this rule. The bank also has the authority to restrict or revoke a card if it is being used for services or goods that are similar to those that it was originally issued for.

In accordance with Shariah law, most Islamic banks are mandated to prohibit the use of their cards in gambling establishments, such as casinos, bars, clubs, as well as theatres. These occupations lack access to finance and accounting services.

Both Visa and MasterCard have restrictions placed on certain types of merchants and activities in the entertainment industry.

In addition, it was declared that debit cards would also be blocked if the bank received complaints or conducted regular checks.

Although some may disagree, each organization has its own set of policies and regulations.


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Nismah Naveed Bhatti
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