High Court of Justice s suspending the reform of the market for kosher cellular lines

Posted on Jul 29, 2022 by Ifi Reporter

The High Court of Justice announced on Thursday evening that it is suspending the reform of the market for kosher cellular lines for at least six months following a petition on the matter. The reform was supposed to take effect early next week, but judges Yitzhak Amit, Anat Baron and Gila Knafi-Steinitz gave the petitioners an interim order and scheduled the hearing Next for early 2023.
At the beginning of August, one of the major reforms that Communications Minister Yoaz Handel worked on throughout his term in office was supposed to be implemented. The reform is intended to open up the ultra-Orthodox cell phone market and allow owners of kosher numbers to port their phone numbers to regular routes outside of the Kuma Hachshara, which is under the control of the Rabbinic Committee for Communications Affairs.
However, the leaders of the ultra-Orthodox community waged a struggle against the reform. First, Handel and the director general of the ministry, Liran Avishar Ben-Horin, met with admorim, rabbis and yeshivas, who came to try to influence the move. Later, the opponents turned to the ultra-Orthodox representatives in the Knesset. MK Moshe Arbel (Shas) submitted a bill two months ago with the aim of delaying the introduction of the reform as much as possible.
Arbel's amendment to the law was supposed to nullify Handel's reform so that the mobility of the numbers would remain within the koma komas and under the rabbinical committee. The bill passed the first reading and returned to the Economic Committee table for discussion in preparation for a second and third reading - however, the Knesset has since dispersed.
In the meantime, the Rabbinic Committee for Communications Affairs, an ultra-Orthodox youth organization and a network of ultra-Orthodox educational institutions petitioned the High Court. The petition submitted by attorney Avi Rimon states that "the Minister of Communications imposes a personal-secular ideology on a broad public of subscribers to the kosher telephone service."


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