The Government of J&K has notified that the Internet access restrictions will be extended till May 11. It has been implemented because of the enhanced threats of cross-border terrorism from Pakistan.
The directive has been issued citing the protection of India’s sovereignty and integrity and to maintain public order, invoking relevant provisions of the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and the Temporary Suspension of telecom Services (Public Emergency of Public Safety) Rules, 2017.
The restrictions notified are as follows:
- The internet speed shall be restricted to 2G only;
- While the postpaid SIM card holders shall continue to be provided access to the internet, these services shall not be made available on pre-paid SIM card unless verified as per the norms applicable for post-paid connections;
- Fixed line internet connectivity shall be available with Mac Binding.
The following reasons have been submitted by the government for the for restricting the internet speed to 2g in Jammu and Kashmir:
- The restrictions have been placed to curb the spread of “provocative videos, guard against rumour mongering/fake news, prevent use of encrypted messaging & VOIP services for infiltrating and coordinating terror activities” and to “defeat the nefarious designs from across the border to propagate terrorism.”
- Recently there has been a spurt in terrorist violence with the launch of new terror outfits. Field agencies have well-founded apprehensions of enhanced efforts by Pakistan for recruitment in terrorist ranks as well as infiltration attempts which heavily depend on high-speed internet.
- Misuse of data services by anti-national elements has the potential to scale up violent activities and disturb public order, which has been maintained till now given the “gradual easing of restrictions on access to the internet while ensuring that rights and interests of the citizens are not affected adversely.”
Read the notification here: