Kashmir has been in a communication shutdown for over a month now. This is not just affecting the people who live in Kashmir but also those who have any ties with Kashmir.
Government claims to have restored mobile phone and landline services in Jammu region, however several students are facing trouble in contacting their families. The situation is worse for those who depend on their families for the money.
News website ‘Scroll’quoted a Kashmiri student, Kalas, in Delhi that he is struggling to talk to his family who lives in Poonch.
“I have not paid my rent for this month,” Kalas said. He also told that his landlord was kind at first but now he is pressing for his dues.
He said he owes his landlord Rs 5,000 and his friends another Rs 12,000 after they offered to help him with his college fees. He last received money from home about three months ago and he is not sure how long it will last. “I eat only twice a day from a food stall next to my house and that too on credit,” he was quoted as saying.
Hundreds of students are facing similar issues after Centre implemented a communication blockade in the wake of abrogation of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution which revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir on August 5. To prevent protests in the Valley, government decided to impose a communication blackout.
Kalas said that a phone call to his family lasts not more than a few seconds. “The network was bad,” he said. “My father said that he would try to send me some money as soon as things get better. And then the call was snapped” he was quoted as saying.
The communication blackout has affected bank services in many parts of Srinagar. However, the government claims that banks and the government offices are normally functioning.
The interruption in the bank services meant that the students from Jammu and Kashmir who are living in other parts of the country face a severe cash shortages as they are not able to get the financial support from home.