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Mobile internet ban extended to Tuesday noon; "Could extend further" says sources

On December 11, 2019, the government of Assam, considering the violent protests going on in the state decided to ban mobile Internet services in 10 districts – Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh, Charaideo, Sivasagar, Jorhat, Golaghat, Kamrup Metro and Karmrup. In the notice, it was mentioned that the 24-hour-ban will if effective from 7:00 PM December 11 and continue till 7:00 PM December 12. Considering there were no or few protests in Barak Valley, Internet service was not banned in this region.

On December 12, 2019, all three district administrations of Barak Valley – Cachar, Karimganj, Hailakandi were notified that the internet services in this region also needs to be stopped for a period of 48 hours starting 12 noon December 12. Since then the internet services in the whole of Assam is stopped. There is a ban on sending bulk SMS too. Then on December 14, senior sources in the administration informed that the government of Assam has decided to extend the ban for 48 more hours meaning till December 16, 2019, Monday. A source in the administration said it was discussed that as the protests have started to tone down it is better to extend the ban.

Today morning as everyone was waiting for the internet services to resume, the state government decided to extend the ban by 24 more hours. Sources in the administration said, considering the current scenario and the ongoing protests the government took the decision. The source added that the ban could further extend for 24 more hours.

As there were no protests in Barak Valley, the Internet ban has come as a shock and cause of major inconvenience for many. After this extension, it becomes a 120-hour-ban on the Internet.

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