Ironically, the Supreme Court on January 10, this year had asserted that access to the Internet was a “fundamental right” under Article 19 of the Constitution. A five-judge bench headed by Justice NV Raman had also asked the UT administration to restore Internet services in important institutions providing essential services like hospitals and educational places.
But Dr Nisar-ul-Hassan, President of Doctors Association of Kashmir (DAK) told this reporter, “Kashmir is the only place in the world where people, even in a pandemic, have been denied a proper internet service. Low-speed internet connectivity has been a huge hindrance in communication between doctors and patients in the Valley.”
G N Var, chairman of the Private Schools’ Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK), claims that over 2.5 million school children have suffered in J & K because of the denial of Internet services. Online classes could not be held, teachers could not be trained and they could neither attend webinars nor organize them.