Postpaid mobile services on all networks were restored in the Kashmir Valley on Monday, 72 days after they were snapped following restrictions. Some 40 lakh postpaid mobile phones have become operational from Monday noon. Tensions are high in Kashmir after New Delhi on August 5 announced abrogation of provisions of Article 370 and decided to bifurcate the state into Union territories - Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh - hours after Kashmir was placed under a total clampdown.
Partial fixed line telephony was resumed in the Valley on August 17 and by September 4, nearly 50,000 landlines were declared operational. In Jammu, the communication was restored within days of the blockade and mobile internet was started around mid-August. However, after its misuse, internet facility on cell phones was snapped on August 18.
Earlier, Jammu and Kashmir government lifted the curbs on tourists following a “situation-cum-security review” meeting with the advisers and the chief secretary. The security advisory was issued for tourists on August 2 to leave the region just before the move to revoke provisions of Article 370 and end special status of Jammu and Kashmir. Modi government had cancelled the Amarnath Yatra and advised pilgrims and tourists to cut short their stay in the Valley "immediately" in view of the "intelligence inputs of terror threats".
The Jammu and Kashmir administration also released three politicians on October 10 on various grounds which includes signing of a bond, officials said on Wednesday night.
Yawar Mir, Noor Mohammed and Shoaib Lone were set free on Thursday. While Mir is a former MLA of the PDP from Rafiabad assembly seat, Lone contested unsuccessfully on a Congress ticket from North Kashmir and later resigned from the party. He was considered close to People’s Conference chief Sajjad Lone. Mohammed is a National Conference worker who has been managing the party’s show in the militancy-infested Batmaloo area of the Srinagar city.
According to official figures, 1.74 lakh tourists visited Kashmir in June, followed by 1.52 lakh, including 3,403 foreigners, in July.