Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir government on Saturday extended the two-day ban on internet services till tomorrow, saying it apprehended “misuse by anti-social elements to create communal tension”.
Inspector general of police of Kashmir as well as Jammu region wrote a letter to all service providers to continue termination of data services till 2 pm on Sunday, official sources said.
The directive, which came on the eve of Eid, came amidst the controversy over beef ban. In the order, the service providers were directed to snap all data services.
“In view of the apprehension of misuse of data services (GPRS/2G/3G) by anti-national elements, which is likely to cause deterioration in law and order situation, you are requested to completely snap down the data services through GPRS/2G/3G and broadband till 2 pm September 27,” said official sources.
The ban, which was to end at 10 pm tonight, has been imposed on internet so that no videos are uploaded and social networking sites are not accessible.
Reacting to the extension of ban, former state chief minister Omar Abdullah said the PDP-BJP government was pushing the people to dark-age.
“During our regime, when situations were far worse, our government only reduced bandwidth so that fictitious videos were not uploaded. But this regime is completely pushing the people of the state to the wall,” Omar said.
“I wonder why chief minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed and his daughter Mehbooba are silent on such draconian actions. They used to accuse my government, but I wonder what they have to say now,” he added.
“In fact Mufti Saheb is living to his promise. He had promised to make the state like Gujarat. Now I guess we are competing with Gujarat as to who bans internet more,” he said.
The measure has been taken because of apprehension of communal tension in the backdrop of the high court directive for implementation of an old law that bans slaughter and selling of beef. Some separatist groups have said they will defy the court order.
This step was also aimed at thwarting mischievous elements, which may violate the court and, as a mark of protest, post the pictures on social media that may spark communal tension.