09 April 2020
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday sought response from the Jammu and Kashmir administration on a plea seeking direction to restore 4G internet services in the Union Territory amid the coronavirus pandemic.
A bench headed by Justice N.V. Ramana and comprising Justices R. Subhash Reddy and B.R. Gavai issued notices and sought reply within a week from the J&K administration on the plea filed by 'Foundation for Media Professionals', which moved the apex court against March 26 order restricting the internet speed to 2G.
Senior advocate Huzefa Ahmadi, representing the petitioner, contended in the backdrop of the ongoing lockdown that it is very necessary to provide connectivity in the region. He cited virtual classes of students can only be carried out through fast-speed internet connectivity.
The bench said it is issuing notice which may be served through e-mail to the J&K administration and the Centre. The plea contended 4G internet speed will be useful in seamless connectivity.
The plea filed through advocate Shadan Farasat termed 2G services as outdated and sought restoration of 4G internet services and alleged that the action of the administration violated Articles 14 (right to equality), 19 (freedom of speech) and 21 (right to life) of the Constitution.
The plea said in the middle of the pandemic, where a nationwide lockdown is in place, the restriction of mobile internet speed to 2G is completely unreasonable, illegal, and unconstitutional. The plea, citing 33 coronavirus cases and 2 reported deaths due to the deadly infection, said it is essential to ensure the flow of information to citizens.