The Supreme Court on Monday reserved its order on petitions demanding that mobile Internet speeds be upgraded from 2G to 4G in J&K with the Centre and the Union Territory administration opposing the demand, citing national security concerns.
Responding to arguments that 2G speed was making it difficult for people to access information on the Internet or consult doctors online in the wake of the COVID-19 and lockdown, Attorney General K K Venugopal told a bench of Justices N V Ramana, R Subhas Reddy and B R Gavai that “it’s about protection of the lives of the entirety of the population of J&K and not just the patients”.
“We can keep a check on who is giving information and disseminating terrorist propaganda,” Venugopal said, adding that the petitions have to be examined against larger public interest of national security.
When the court asked how the government was taking care of the COVID-19 situation with regard to the restrictions, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta replied that health services are working.
The SG replied there are other areas too in the country where there is either no Internet or only the availability of 2G, and that there is no information that someone has died of COVID because they didn’t have Internet access.
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