After eight months of zero and partial internet, folks in Kashmir will be able to use all sites. However, restrictions on connectivity are still in place. So, only 2G postpaid connections, verified prepaid connections, and fixed lines with Mac address binding can access the internet.
An order issued by the Jammu and Kashmir home department today mentioned no specific restrictions. Tahir Ashraf, the head of Cyber Police Kashmir, confirmed to TNW that social media apps would be accessible.
In January, Kashmir authorities started allowing people living in the region access to 2G internet. However, this access was limited to certain sites, — 165, 301, and 1,485 in subsequent orders — but social media sites were still banned.
Last month, the police also filed a case against folks using VPN (Virtual Private Network) and social media apps to prevent “misuse” and rumor-mongering.
This will provide relief to several businesses in the region, who had to stop operation after the Indian government decided to block the internet in August. A report released by Kashmir Chamber of commerce in December, noted that businesses lost $2.4 billion since the lockdown.