Mobile services may be snapped again in Kashmir ahead of Oct 31 

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Wahid Bhat | Srinagar

Mobile services in Kashmir Valley may again suspend ahead of October 31, when Jammu and Kashmir will be declared as the Union Territory.

According to top sources post-paid mobile services might be snapped again due to the rise in terrorism-related incidents in the valley in past few says. This has added to the worries of the locals. 

 “This will be a precautionary measure to avert any trouble ahead of the declaration of Jammu and Kashmir as a Union Territory, as Pakistan and its agents are reported to be preparing for some terror acts during this period” Sources said. 

Mobile services were snapped on August 5 when the special status of Jammu and Kashmir article 3870 and 35A were abrogated by Government of India besides divided Jammu and Kashmir into two Union territories, Jammu Kashmir and Ladkah, but it restored it on October 14, but within hours, the SMS services were suspended for precautionary measure.

All communication channels were shut on August 5, when Article 370, that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir, was scrapped.

Recently, some suspected militants had killed anapple trader from Punjab, a brick kiln worker from Chhattisgarh and a truck driver from Rajasthan in separate incidents to disrupt the harvest season in the entire valley. 

These incidents have scared the people in south Kashmir. Dilbagh Singh, police chief, told the media that they have identified the killers of all the three civilians and expressed hope that they would be hunted down soon. Following the killings, the police chief visited Shopian district in south Kashmir and assured the fruit traders thatthey would provide them with required security so that they could transport apples out of Kashmir.

The export of apples from Kashmir took a hit after a truck driver from Rajasthan identified by the police as Sharif Khan was shot dead. After the incident, several truck drivers fled from Kashmir and many are now refusing to come to Kashmir to transport fruits out of the valley. 

The apple business in the valley has been suffering since 5 August as traders could not transport fruits specially pears and grapes. The market intervention scheme that was launched by the government hasn’t helped producers much.

The government authorities are closely monitoring the situation and are not allowing any protest rallies as they fear that the situation might go out of control. 

The government authorities are closely monitoring the situation and are not allowing any protest rallies as they fear that the situation might go out of control. 

The situation in the valley has not regained normalcy as no classes have resumed in educational institutions. 

It’s nearly 80 days since the Indian government enforced a communication blackout in Kashmir, feared violent backlash to its decision to scrap the special constitutional status of the restive Jammu & Kashmir state.

Some mobile phone connections were restored a week ago, but there’s no sign of the internet for the Valley’s 8 million people.