India has ordered internet service providers in Indian-controlled Kashmir to immediately block Facebook, Twitter and 20 other social media sites and online applications for one month, after several videos and photos depicting alleged abuses of Kashmiris by Indian security forces sparked outrage and fueled protests.
The government said the restrictions ordered Wednesday were made “in the interest of maintenance of public order.” But Pranesh Prakash, policy director for the Indian advocacy group the Center for Internet and Society, called it a “blow to freedom of speech” and “legally unprecedented in India.”
“It not only violates the Indian constitution but also violates international law,” he said.
Most of the applications the government ordered blocked were still working Thursday. However, 3G and 4G mobile connections in the Kashmir Valley have not worked for more than a week now. Broadband and 2G connections have not been affected.
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