Srinagar, Jan 11: Hopes have brightened for the restoration of broadband internet services after district authorities gave a positive feedback to Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu on the overall security situation in the valley.
This followed the Supreme Court’s directives to Jammu and Kashmir administration to review all the curbs within a week.
Chairing a meeting with district development commissioners and district police chiefs through video conference, Murmu had a detailed discussion on the overall security environment prevailing in the valley. This was the first security review meeting in which SSPs and DCs gave their feedback on the restoration of internet facility post August 5.
“First meeting was held with district police chiefs and other senior officers of police department. They gave their positive feedback about immediate internet restoration to essential services in Kashmir. It was decided that internet services to be restored in a phased manner,” a source privy to the meeting said.
The source said some officials were reluctant to restore broadband to general public before January 26. “Some suggested that internet services shall be restored within a week to essential services. Post January 26, services can be restored to others,” the source said.
One of the DCs said officers were unanimous that broadband internet shall be restored to essential services in the first phase. “It was also discussed how to monitor the internet especially in south Kashmir,” he said.
The DC however said mobile internet won’t be restored for a time being. “For at least two months, mobile internet is unlikely to be restored in Kashmir,” the DC said.
Sources said the government will hold few more meetings with officials before taking a final call on the restoration of internet. Final decision, sources said, is likely to be taken by Thursday.
J&K administration has decided to review of all the issues in the wake of the Apex Court’s directives. It has rekindled hope that internet services may be restored after five months.
In its verdict, the Supreme Court said access to internet is a fundamental right under Article 19 of the Constitution and asked the J&K administration to review all orders imposing curbs in the new Union Territory.
A five bench judge headed by Justice N V Ramana asked J&K administration to restore internet services in institutions providing essential services like hospitals and educational places.
Internet services were snapped across Kashmir on August 5. Since then all sectors have been badly affected. The internet restoration was also raked by politicians with envoys of 15 countries who visited Kashmir on Thursday.