This decision comes after the Madras HC questioned why Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari must lose internet services when protests were in Thoothukudi.

Internet services restored in Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari no decision on Thoothukudi yet
news Sterlite Protest Friday, May 25, 2018 - 16:24

Two days after the state government ordered the suspension of internet services in Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari, the Madras High Court has intervened. On Friday, based on a petition filed by an advocate, the court asked the Tamil Nadu government to consider restoring internet services in the districts, as the situation was returning to normal.

The court further questioned why services were suspended in Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari when violent protests were witnessed only in Thoothukudi.

Following this, the TN government has allowed for internet services to be restored in the two districts. The suspension of services in Thoothukudi however continues.

In the wake of protests and tension in Thoothukudi following police shootouts that killed 13 people, telecom players received a directive from the Chief Secretary Girija Vaidyanathan to bar data services in three districts of Tamil Nadu. Data services were to be barred from Tuesday evening (May 23) until May 27. The directive stated that provocative messages were spread on social media with ‘half truth' and anti-social elements were trying to exploit the situation, leading to a public emergency situation. It claimed that this necessitated immediate action for public tranquillity. “…and it felt necessary that services of internet should be stopped/curtailed to prevent spreading of such information, rumours with half truth.”

Following this however, advocate Suriyprakasam approached the Madras HC asking that internet services be restored. Both students and businesses have reportedly been adversely affected by this decision.

Collector Sandeep Nanduri while talking to the media in Thoothukudi said that a call would be taken on the matter after a review of security in the district was conducted with the police.

"Normalcy will be restored step by step," he told the media.

Advocate Suriyaprakasam has further requested for the CBI to probe the shooting of protesters by the police force in the district. 13 people were killed due to alleged police brutality while over 100 were injured during the anti-Sterlite protests. The Court has asked for the state government and CBI to respond to the request for enquiry on May 30. 

 

 

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