SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Friday extended the 4G mobile internet ban till January 8 in all districts, except in Ganderbal and Udhampur.
Internet services were cut off in Jammu and Kashmir last year on August 5, hours before the Centre revoked Article 370 of the Constitution and split the state into two Union Territories. The low-speed or 2G internet service on mobile phones was restored on January 25, although outages continue to be imposed intermittently amid a complete ban on 4G network. On August 16, the government restarted high-speed mobile data service in Ganderbal and Udhampur districts on a “trial basis”, as part of “calibrated easing of restrictions”.
The order issued by Principal Secretary to the Government, Home Department reads that, “it is absolutely necessary so to do in the interest of the sovereignty and integrity of India, The security of the Slate and for maintaining public order, in the exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of section 5 of the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and sub-rule (1) of rule 2 of the Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency or Public Safety) Rules, 2017.”
“The high-speed mobile data services in the districts of Ganderbal and Udhampur shall continue to be made available, while in rest of the districts, the internet speed be restricted to 2G only,” it added.
“While the postpaid sim cardholders shall continue to be provided access to the internet, these services shall not be made available on pre-paid cards unless verified as per the norms applicable for post-paid connections,” it reads.
“Internet connectivity, without any speed-related restrictions, shall continue to be made available with Mac-binding,” it added.
“The aforesaid directions shall be effective from today, December 25, 2020, and remain in force till January 8, 2021, unless modified earlier. The IsGP, Kashmir/Jammu shall communicate these directions to the service providers forthwith and ensure their implementation in letter and spirit,” reads the order.