There is normalcy in Kashmir: Centre tells Supreme Court

ANI New Delhi, India Nov 21, 2019, 05.04 PM(IST)

File photo Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta said that access to the internet, printers and other facilities was given to the media professionals.

The Centre on Thursday told the Supreme Court that there is normalcy in Kashmir and the situation which is being depicted about the region is "incorrect."

Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, made these contentions on a petition filed by Kashmir Times Editor Anuradha Bhasin on the imposition of communication blockade in the region.

She has alleged that following the revocation of its special status, the Central government had disabled various media activities.

"The petitioner (Anuradha Bhasin) has chosen not to publish the newspaper from Kashmir. It is her wish. There were no restrictions as such. There is normalcy of life in Kashmir. The situation presented and depicted is incorrect," Mehta told a bench headed by Justice N V Ramana.

Mehta said that access to the internet, printers and other facilities was given to the media professionals.

"At regular intervals, media professionals were briefed and provided press briefs. Media kiosks were facilitated at the DCP offices to various media professionals," Mehta said.

While justifying certain restrictions imposed in the region, the Solicitor General said that authorities had applied their minds in imposing or lifting the curbs.

"It is a preventive measure. It is not a long drawn trial. It is not a danger to public life. Ninety-nine per cent people are happy and living a normal life there," he said.

In August, the Central government scrapped Article 370 and bifurcated the erstwhile state into two UTs -- Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Following this, phone lines and the internet were blocked in the region.

Normalcy is gradually returning to Jammu and Kashmir as mobile and landline services have been restored in both UTs and restrictions under Section 144 on movement have been withdrawn or relaxed.