Wednesday, 4 March 2020
J&K administration removes social media curbs, internet speed restricted to 2G
The order, that was issued without the requisite whitelist of websites, stated that internet access shall be available across the UT of J&K with speed restricted to 2G and "these services shall not be made available on pre-paid sim cards".
The J&K administration on Wednesday removed curbs from social media usage across the Union Territory. The directions came after a review of the situation by the J&K Home department.
The order, that was issued without the requisite whitelisted websites, stated that internet access shall be available across the Union Territory of J&K with speed restricted to 2G and “these services shall not be made available on pre-paid sim cards”.
Additionally, for fixed-line internet, connectivity shall continue to be made available “with mac-binding at unlimited speeds”.
Internet services, landline, and mobile phones were snapped across J&K on the eve of the Centre’s August 5 announcement to scrap the special status of the erstwhile state under Article 370 and its bifurcation. From January, landlines, postpaid mobile services, and internet facilities to essential services like hospitals were restored in phases in Kashmir.
What SC said on lifting restrictions in Kashmir
The easing of restrictions came after the Supreme Court, on January 10, asked the J&K administration to “review all orders suspending internet services forthwith”.
Ruling that “freedom of speech and expression and the freedom to practice any profession or carry on any trade, business or occupation over the medium of Internet enjoys constitutional protection under Article 19 (1) (a) and Article 19 (1) (g)”, the Supreme Court had said that “an order suspending internet services indefinitely is impermissible”.
The government had said, “Restriction upon such fundamental rights should be in consonance with the mandate under Article 19 (2) and (6) of the Constitution, inclusive of the test of proportionality.”