Broadband to be partially restored in J&K, social media still out of bounds

However, mobile internet still remained suspended in Budgam, Ganderbal, Baramulla, Srinagar, Kulgam, Anantnag, Shopian and Pulwama. Photo: PTI

Days after the Supreme Court ordered a review of the curbs imposed the Union Territory, the government of Jammu and Kashmir, on late Tuesday (January 14) evening, ordered the restoration of internet services for institutions dealing with essential services like hospital, banks and government offices, in parts of Jammu region.

In a three-page order, the Jammu and Kashmir administration directed the internet service providers to provide broadband facility (with Mac binding) to all the institutions in parts of Jammu region with effect from Wednesday, which will remain in force for 7 days unless modified.

Mac Binding essentially means to enforce a client machine to work from a particular Internet Protocol address.

Also read: J&K residents keep fingers crossed as cops give nod to internet restoration

“Prior to giving such facility, the service providers have been asked to install necessary firewalls and carry out white-listing of sites that would enable government websites and website dealing with essential services like e-banking,” the order said.

The order stated that 2G mobile connectivity on post-paid for accessing white-listed sites, including for e-banking, shall be allowed, to begin with, in the districts of Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Udhampur and Reasi.

However, in the other districts of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, mobile internet connectivity will remain suspended till further directions.

However, all social media sites remain out of bounds. “There shall be complete restrictions on social media applications allowing peer-to-peer communication and virtual private network applications for the time being,” the order said.

Also read: SC asks J&K admin to review curbs within 7 days, Cong lauds verdict

Similarly, the government offices would also be provided with the broadband facility in order to facilitate tourism, to hotels and tour and travel establishments.

The order said that the police has brought material relating to the terror modules operating in Jammu and Kashmir including handlers from across the border who are attempting to aid and incite people by transmission of fake news and targeted messages through use of internet.

Earlier, this month short messaging services (SMS) services were restored in Kashmir.  Communication and internet services were disconnected on August 4 a day after the centre revoked special status and divided the state into two Union Territories.