2G mobile internet services to be restored in Kashmir from today
(ANI Photo)

Srinagar: After remaining shut for more than five months, 2G mobile internet services on postpaid as well as prepaid phones will be restored in the Kashmir Valley from Saturday but can only be used to access 301 websites approved by the Jammu and Kashmir administration, an official order said.

According to a notification issued by the home department of the Jammu and Kashmir administration, access to the internet with 2G speed on mobile phones will resume from January 25. Access shall be limited only on whitelisted sites and social media applications will continue to remain out of bounds for the Valley's residents, it said, adding, data services shall be available on postpaid as well as prepaid sim cards.

The move comes within a week of the administration ordering restoration of prepaid mobile services in the Valley and resumption of 2G mobile data service on whitelisted websites across the Jammu division. The sites approved include search engines and those associated with banking, education, news, travel, utilities and employment.

The latest development comes after the Supreme Court, in a significant ruling on January 10, asked the Jammu and Kashmir administration to review within a week all orders imposing curbs in the Union Territory. The Supreme Court came down heavily on the UT administration for arbitrarily shutting down the internet, the facility described as a fundamental right by the apex court.

Internet services, landline and mobile phones were snapped across Jammu and Kashmir on the eve of the Centre's announcement to scrap special status of the erstwhile state and its bifurcation into Union Territories on August 5. While most of the services except mobile internet were restored in Jammu within a week, Kashmir witnessed restoration of landlines and postpaid mobile services and internet facilities for essential services like hospitals in phases.

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