4G internet in 2 J&K districts from Aug 16

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 8/12/2020 11:15:54 AM

NEW DELHI, Aug 11: The 4G internet services lying suspended in Jammu and Kashmir since August 5 last year coinciding with the revocation of Article 370 will be restored on trial basis for two months in one district each of Kashmir and Jammu regions from August 16.
Attorney General K K Venugopal made this submission in the Supreme Court on behalf of the Centre, with an affidavit that says this was decided by a 3-member high level committee, comprising the union home secretary, communication secretary and J&K chief secretary, in consultation with the local agencies in the Union Territory. He, however, did not disclose names of the districts that will start getting the high-speed 4G internet.
A three-judge bench of Justices NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy and BR Gavai was hearing the petition filed by the Noida-based Foundation for Media Professionals (FMP), seeking the restoration of high-speed internet services in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Attorney General said the 4G internet is being relaxed in limited areas considering the security issues in the Kashmir valley since the border security issue is still prevalent and it is not yet conducive to restore high-speed internet access to mobile phones.
The relaxation from 2G to 4G internet will not be allowed in the area adjoining Line of Control (LoC). The 4G internet will be restored only in areas that have low intensity of terrorist activities and these areas will be strictly monitored. The same shall be reviewed after two months of the trial period.
In an affidavit, the Centre said the committee cleared the restoration of high-speed internet services in some areas of the Union Territory that are "comparatively less sensitive from a national security, internal security, border security and public order standpoint"
"A carefully calibrated easing of some restrictions in limited and specified geographical areas" can be attempted on trial basis, the committee has said, adding that areas near the international border or Line of Control (LoC) will not be included in this, the affidavit said.
It submitted that since the "threat perception on the security front in Jammu and Kashmir continues to be high" and that the "restrictions are not posing any hindrance to COVID control measures, education programmes or carrying out business activities," the current atmosphere in the valley is not conducive to allow 4G internet services across the entire UT.



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