People in Kashmir were in for a shock when mobile phone services were suspended without prior announcements by the government on Thursday night. Landline phones and postpaid mobile phones on BSNL network continued to be operational in some areas.
The Valley has been under strict curfew for the past six days, since violent clashes broke out between security forces and people protesting the killing of Burhan Wani, a top commander of Hizbul Mujahideen. Mobile phone networks were suspended a few days ago in Shopian, Bijbehara, Anantnag and other volatile areas of South Kashmir, where protests first erupted.
Official sources told International Business Times, India that authorities ordered the suspension of mobile phone network fearing protests during the Friday afternoon prayer congregations. The decision to restore the mobile and internet connectivity would be taken after due assessment of the situation.
According to a report in Rising Kashmir, J&K police personnel seized newspapers from vendors in the wee hours today.
The clashes have resulted in the death of at least 38 people, including security personnel. More than 1,200 people are injured and have been admitted to various hospitals. The Valley is reeling under shortage of essential supplies, including food items, infant products and medicines.
A medical emergency was declared by Qaisar Ahmad, the Principal of the Government Medical College in Srinagar, across hospitals in Kashmir, following which the leave of all the doctors and paramedic staff stands cancelled.
Nearly 100 people have lost their sight due to pellet-guns induced injuries. On the request of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, the central government has flown in a three-member team of eye surgeons to the Valley.
The separatist leaders of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, including the hardline leader, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and Chairman of the Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front, Yasin Malik, have been put under house arrest by the state government.