By MUDASIR AHMED 27|January|SRINAGAR: Scores of netizens Saturday took to social networking sites to register their protest over the suspension of cellular and internet services by government on the R-Day.
Cellular and internet services were suspended from Saturday morning as a security measure. Ahead of R-Day celebrations, the state government usually asks the internet service providers and cellular companies to ban cellular service and block internet access across the Valley.
As the services were restored by Saturday afternoon, enraged netizens flocked social sites and condemned the ban as “telecom terror” and “unnecessary diktat.”
“Jamming mobile networks amounts to telecom terror. You can do better. Find some smarter way of countering threats, this is old school #Kashmir,” Shuja-ul-Haq wrote on his Facebook immediately after the cellular and internet services were restored.
Another Facebook user Ifat Gazia wrote, “Everyday I received a wakeup call from my parents but today in my sleep itself I was wondering why my sleep is stretching. Then I realised it is Republic day in India and on this day we are subjected to realise that we are a security threat and thus our phones are left without network.”
In India, Ifat wrote, everyone rejoices with a sense of freedom and “we are made to remember that there is no freedom for us.”
Another user Sana Fazili said, “Why do they celebrate their Republic day by jamming our mobile phones? Grow up ‘sarkar,’ find a better way to celebrate.”
“Power cut, mobile network jammed, men in uniform near every home, mosque, park, street, schoolchildren taken to parade on diktats, frisking, and restriction on movement and possibly on breathing too,” wrote Owais Nanda. “Indeed novel ideals of Constitution into translation.”
Echoing Nanda’s views, Muhammad Faysal, a Malaysia-based Kashmiri student, posted, “Today, all phone lines and mobile networks will be Jammed. Today the internet will shut down. Today, there will be a siege where nobody will be allowed to move. Today, people will be forced to attend India’s republic day celebrations…”
Micro-blogging site twitter was also flooded with tweets from Kashmir twitterati.
Prominent Kashmiri journalist Yusuf Jameel tweeted: “Don’t see much in internet, mobile services suspension; as is done in Karachi, and some other places too. What if emergencies occur during blackout?”
A prominent twitter user that goes by the pseudonym of ‘IbneBattuta’ tweeted: “Humans barricaded, populations under siege & communication services blocked; How India celebrates Republic day in #Kashmir.”