Defending restrictions on the use of mobile phones and internet, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Wednesday said the curb has been imposed as these facilities were abused as “a weapon” against the country and mostly exploited by terrorists to mobilise the people.
“There is much hullabaloo over the absence of telephone facilities. I want to say that people should wait for 10 more days. For us every life is important. Please try to understand the reasons behind these restrictions. Who uses phone and internet? It is of little use for us but is mostly exploited by terrorists and Pakistanis,” Malik told reporters here.
“Phone and internet facilities were used to mobilise people and indoctrination. This is a weapon against us. That is why we have curbed the use of mobile phones and the internet. We will ease out restrictions gradually,” Malik added.
He said that mobile services will be restored gradually but there will be a delay in the resumption of internet services.
“Out of 111, time relaxations have been given in the areas under 81 police stations. In 167 police stations, there are no day-time restrictions. Landline services have been restored at most of the places. We will start mobile services gradually but there will be a delay in the internet services,” the Governor said.
Justifying the decision to continue with the ban on mobile phones and the internet services in the Valley, Malik said: “We know the people will have to face some problems due to this. We must know it is the most dangerous instrument. And all lies are being peddled through the internet.”
Malik further said the telecom connectivity in 46 out of 90 exchanges has been opened up covering major areas. “Mobile phones are working in six districts of Jammu, which will be opened in all 10 districts of Jammu and two districts of Ladakh today. We are also resuming all mobile phone services in Kupwara and Handwara police districts. In a few days, relaxation will be extended to other areas as well,” he said.
The Governor said the Centre’s decision to scrap provisions of Article 370 and bifurcating Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories has been taken for the people’s prosperity.
“Now our aim is to work so hard that the people get to know that the decision has been taken for their welfare. I assure you that there will be grand-scale development here. The people from Kashmir of the other side (PoK) will also begin to say that they want to be people like here,” said Malik.