Hours after Hurriyat said its chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s health had deteriorated, an Internet breakdown on Tuesday spurred rumour of Geelani’s death. As the mobile telephone services too were disrupted sometime later, panic gripped the state.
Hours after the Hurriyat’s a statement that Geelani would be flown to New Delhi due to his detriorating health condition, the Valley saw an Internet breakdown and Internet could not be accessed on any mobile network. The landline broadband Internet services offered by the BSNL had also snapped.
This spurred rumour about Geelani’s death. Sometime later, the cellular telephone services were also disrupted causing panic.
The first denial came late Tuesday night from CM Omar Abdullah. The tweet from CM, however, failed to put the speculation to rest. “I know we love a good conspiracy theory but the failure of the phones has nothing to do with the rumours floating around,” Omar tweeted.
BSNL officials said the Internet breakdown was caused by the breakdown in powergrid. “There was a breakdown in powergrid. This was caused by the heavy snowfall. Also our optical fibre cable was cut by the snowfall. We have partially restored it,” said Nazir Joo, who heads the Mobile Division of BSNL On Wednesday, Hurriyat said Geelani is stable and he will be brought to Delhi on Thursday morning for treatment.