Major Disruption in Internet Services in Delhi-NCR amidst violence at the red fort yesterday; Users Affected

Story Highlights
  • Massive agitation in Delhi whilst the tractor rally on Republic Day was followed by disrupted internet services at certain areas
  • MHA released the order in view of the law-and-order situations in several parts of Delhi
  • Along with disrupted internet services, users around the areas are facing major problems in making voice calls as well

Amidst the tractor rally on the streets of the national capital on Republic Day, the Centre implemented a suspension of internet services at the border points of the capital, which include Ghazipur, Singhu, Tikri, Mukarba Chowk, Nangloi, and other adjoining protest grounds.

The Ministry of Home Affairs released a statement regarding the matter, through which the ministry issued a temporary suspension of internet services in certain areas, in view of ensuring public safety.

The order released by the MHA read – “In exercise of the power conferred by Section 7 of the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885, read with sub-rule 1 of Rule 2 of the temporary suspension of telecom services (public emergency or public safety) rules 2017, and in the interest of maintaining public safety and averting public emergency it is necessary and expedient to order, the temporary suspension of internet services in the areas of Singhu, Ghazipur, Tikri, Mukarba Chowk and Nangloi and their adjoining areas in the NCR of Delhi from 12:00 hours to 23:59 hours on January 26, 2021”.

According to the sources, the order came following the request from Delhi Police to Home Minister Amit Shah after Delhi witnessed frequent law-and-order situations at various parts.

A telecom analyst, on this matter, opined on the temporary suspension of the internet – “The internet services are essential for mobilizing crowds on a large scale. Today, we saw that the situation went out of control after protests turned violent. Till the government is not comfortable with the law and order situation, the internet services are not coming back”.

Whilst, as per the data revealed by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), the national capital is the 12th largest market for the wireless network in the country. Therefore, the disruption in internet services at such a major market may significantly affect the rest of the states to some extent. 

Moreover, despite the Centre having implemented suspension of only internet services, the IP-based telecom operators (such as Jio) are confronting issues with voice calls as well; because the disrupted internet service has been causing a blockage in the data flowing area of the IP-based telecom operators.

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