Reporters in Kashmir get a satellite phone for ₹100,000 a piece as all other communication devices are shut down


  • BSNL will give satellite phones to media persons at ₹1 lakh a piece to file stories from the Valley.
  • These satellite phones are capable of providing location-based services like tracking facility, GPS location, emergency alert among others.
  • The government has already cut off mobile internet services and is planning to snap away call services soon.
The situation in Kashmir -- that lies near the India-Pakistan border -- is becoming tense by every hour. Top political leaders, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, are under house arrest. The government has already cut off mobile internet services and is planning to snap away call services soon.

However, the complete communications blackout would be a severe handicap for a contingent of on-ground reporters in Kashmir. State-owned telecom service provider BSNL has come to the rescue.

BSNL will give satellite phones to media persons at ₹1 lakh a piece to file stories from the Valley. These satellite phones are capable of providing location-based services like tracking facility, GPS location, emergency alert among others.

The Authorities decided to suspend the mobile internet facility on late Sunday night to avoid any rumors.


Separately, government officials placed at top positions also possess 350 cellphones and 2,000 satellite phones to keep the government posted about the status of the tensed situation in Kashmir, reported The Quint citing sources.

The development came in after the government imposed section 144 in Kashmir. According to the order, there shall be no movement of public and all educational institutions shall also remain closed. People cannot hold any kind of public meetings or rallies during the period of operation of this order.

On Friday (August 2) evening, the Indian government asked thousands of Amarnath Yatra pilgrims to leave Kashmir immediately citing a terror threat. Since then, the state has been in confusion and chaos.

Making matters worse is a series of speculation by both news outfits as well as on social media that has led to people fearing the worst and hoarding food and necessities.

The radio silence from New Delhi, while building up troops in the valley, in the face of rampant speculation has added to the unease, particularly in the Kashmir valley.

The Cabinet Committee on Security meeting on Monday (August 5) morning will be watched closely.

SEE ALSO:
All that's happened in Kashmir over the last 72 hours – from movement of troops to suspension of internet to political leaders under house arrest
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