Manipur Government Conditionally Restores Broadband Services After Three Months of Internet Shutdown

The Manipur government announced on Tuesday that it has conditionally restored broadband services in the state after nearly three months of internet shutdown due to ethnic violence. However, mobile internet services will remain suspended, as stated in the notification issued by the Home Department.

The decision to lift the suspension for broadband service (ILL and FTTH) has been made with certain terms and conditions, ensuring all possible safeguards are in place. The state government took into consideration the suffering of the common people during the internet ban, which had significant impacts on various essential services and daily activities.

As per the order, the restoration of broadband services will only be allowed through static IP, and subscribers must not accept any other connections apart from those specifically permitted for the time being. WiFi/Hotspots from any routers and systems using the connection will not be allowed by the subscribers concerned.

The notification also mentioned that the suspension of mobile internet data will continue. The government expressed concerns over the spread of disinformation, false rumors, and the possibility of mobilizing agitators and demonstrators through social media platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. The control and regulatory mechanism for mobile data services are deemed inadequate to address potential threats to public safety and property.

The unrest in Manipur began on May 3, following protests by the Kuki and Meitei communities against the High Court’s order regarding the inclusion of the Meitei community in the category of Scheduled Tribes (ST). Only STs are allowed to purchase land in hilly areas. The Meitei community, occupying the Imphal Valley and nearby regions, sought ST status due to population growth and the need for increased land acquisition in hilly areas.

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