Solicitor General and Senior Counsel of India Tushar Mehta offered arguments on behalf of the Indian government in response to petitions filed in response to the restrictions, communication blockade and other issues in Jammu and Kashmir after 5 August.
Citing “Internet Jihad“ as the reason, Tushar Mehta justified the communications blockade put in place in India’s restive Jammu and Kashmir that was imposed after the abrogation of the state's special status.
“The spread of Jihad on Internet is now a global phenomenon. Unfortunately, Internet Jihadi is a successful one. Jihadis can engage through Internet to spread hatred. Blocking Internet is justified to prevent such terror acts on dark web," Mehta said in the the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
He also said that the internet restrictions in the valley are minimal and people can visit internet centres, installed by the government, after they obtain passes.
Asserting that the Centre has taken the least restrictive measures, mindful of the inconvenience it may cause to people, Mehta said that imposing such restrictions was crucial to prevent the nexus of terrorism spreading through the internet these days.
“Clandestine activities take place on the dark web, where even things like AK47 guns can be purchased,” he told the court.
While telephone services were resumed in phases days after the revocation of Article 370 of the Indian constitution in the valley, post-paid mobile phone calling services only resumed on 12 October and pre-paid connections as well as SMS services remain barred. The internet service is partly available to selected group of people, on request.