Internet —– Oxygen and blood, Let it flow”
Showkat Ahmad Dar
The Internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow. We are all now
connected by the Internet, like neurons in a giant brain. Infact the internet became boon and bane for the people today. Nowadays, most things are connected to the internet and it has completely changed the way we live our lives.
Research has shown that the value of the Internet of things goes further than just connected devices, through the habits that we live by and how this affects our businesses and our personal lives. On the way home from work a woman uses her phone to turn on her central heating. At the same time, an
elder male’s pacemaker is telling the computer at his hospital that his heart-rate has slowed down. Almost everything is accessible in seconds. We are in control of practically everything we own. For people with disabilities or physical difficulties, this kind of technology has probably improved the quality of their lives tenfold. An elderly woman that has difficulty standing can use the internet to turn off the lights in her house when she goes to bed. A man at work can access his home’s CCTV camera to check on his disabled father. The internet is helping is find solutions to everything that used to put a stop to us living our lives freely.
Last month, I met my flock of Intellectual benevolent humans. All we in combine decided to make competitive exams a little easy for young aspirants in Kashmir valley. After hitting the road about the same joint venture we decided to develop an App which will provides students study material, counseling and information on courses and examinations among other features. After few months we all decided to stop this joint venture. the reason for stoppage is nothing but only persistent barring of internet in Kashmir valley. And this got me thinking the percentage of netizens is tremendously
increasing day by day and percentage is expected to increase 3.9 billion in 2018 .How will Bharat
achieve the Digital India plan of making the Internet available to everybody if we curb access to it in some parts of the country?
At the moment, the tendency of the authorities, in India as well as in other countries, is to shut down the Internet or mobile network in conflict situations to close channels of communications for insurgents. That affects civilians as well.
In the last four years, there have been 27 cases of network shutdowns across India. This figure is from a soon-to-be- released report titled Internet Shutdowns in India that the research & advocacy wing of the Digital Empowerment
Foundation (DEF) has prepared. Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, allows the state apparatus to prohibit the assembly of more than 10 people in an area.
Section 69A of the Information Technology Act gives the centre the power to block certain websites or order the blocking of access to data services if a situation threatens security.
In India, it seems, restrictions have been growing over the years. According to DEF’s ‘Internet Shutdown in India’ report, there were two cases each of Internet shutdowns in 2013, 2014 and 2019. But last year, India recorded 14 cases of Internet shutdowns, one of the highest in its history. This year, between May and June alone, the country has already witnessed nine cases of Internet shutdowns, not including the
ongoing virtual curfew imposed in the Valley.
Nine Indian states have witnessed network shutdowns between January 2018 and Jan 2019, Jammu and Kashmir ranks first with nine shutdowns due to “terrorist attack”, “social
unrest”, “possibility of spread of rumors on social media” and
“precautionary measure in view of the Prime Minister’s rally in Srinagar”. It’s followed by Gujarat and Haryana with eight and four cases, respectively.
“Social unrest” due to issues of beef ban, Jat agitation, reservation and terrorist attacks are the main reasons for the high number of network shutdowns in these two states.
Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Meghalaya, Manipur and Nagaland recorded one case each in the last four years.
It is interesting to note that Jammu and Kashmir and Gujarat top the list. While national security, insurgency and the spread of violence are a fear in the conflict-ridden state of Jammu & Kashmir, I wonder what similar threats the government sees in Gujarat—a presumably conflict-free state. Also, if conflict states “require” the government to sometimes impose Section
69A on certain occasions to maintain law and order, how come there has been no such incident reported in
Chhattisgarh, which is affected by Maoist insurgency, in the last four years?
According to the same DEF report, authorities say that 11 out of 27 network shutdowns in India were enforced for “preventive measures”—to maintain law and order in the area.
The increasing number of shutdowns seems to show that the
government is evading its actual responsibility of maintaining law and order, and taking post-incident measures which are undemocratic.
We must understand here that a virtual curfew (Internet shutdown) is as bad as, if not worse than, a physical curfew. It involves many more people and it’s not restricted to a geography. It includes anybody who is online.
Additionally, the government must also understand that the Internet, more than any other medium of communication, is a force multiplier for constructive purposes, instead of perceiving it as a tool merely for nefarious ones. Even at atime of a possible threat to law and order, access to the
Internet also provides citizens with access to emergency services.
My paradise kashmirs economy is shrinking day by day. its all due to barring of frequent internet by the authorities . This barring laid down titanic effect on the lives of students and businessman in different ways. Flock of kashmir Youth are doing their business with telecommunications. Hence due to barring of internet they all get big blow in terms of their economy and livelihood. Dear digital India Remember access to internet is our Democratic right, so don’t take it again and again from us. Infact this is blessing of science not blessing of state or govt. Look towards developed countries of the world and try to mug up their mantra of wellbeing and prosperity. Major portion of their economy and prosperity lies in the accessing of internet. It’s not enough to call yourself worlds 3rd largest economy. The agencies of the govt became lame in order to carry out their daily functions because of frequent internet barring So who suffers only kashmiris where barring of internet is Perpetual. The government of India and its line ,staff agencies are unable to solve the problems of people .It gave a birth to Red tapeism again
In today’s time, access to the Internet is a democratic right, and it should not be taken away from citizens on the pretext of law and order.