New Delhi: India imposed the highest number of internet shutdowns globally in 2022 including 49 in Kashmir, a new report by digital rights advocacy firm Access Now shows.
Out of the 187 internet shutdowns recorded globally by Access Now in the year, 84 took place in India, including 49 in Kashmir.
“Authorities disrupted internet access at least 49 times in Kashmir due to political instability and violence, including a string of 16 back-to-back orders for three-day-long curfew-style shutdowns in January and February 2022,” internet advocacy watchdog Access Now report said on Tuesday, as per Reuters.
On August 5, 2019, BJP led government of India abrogated Article 370 of India that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir and divided the erstwhile states into two union territories- JK and Ladakh.
Since then, the government has frequently imposed communications gags in the Valley. Human rights organisations have denounced these restrictions and labelled them as efforts to quell dissent.
Even though India continued to lead the globe in internet outages, the watchdog reported that in 2022 there were less than 100 outages nationwide for the first time since 2017.
Pertinently, after invading Ukraine on February 24 of last year, the Russian military knocked off internet connectivity there at least 22 times, placing Ukraine second on the list.