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End Restrictions on Communications and Mass Detentions in Kashmir

Since August 5, 2019, the Government of India has imposed widespread communications restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir. Even though the Indian Supreme Court has ruled that the restrictions are illegal, the government has still not restored full communications in the region to the way it was before August 5. Even where the restrictions are ostensibly relaxed, personal home broadband connections and all access to social media sites remained banned other than in hospitals and government offices. 

More than 7 million people in Kashmir have been without internet for more than 150 days, which has come at a cost of more than $US 1bn to the economy. 

When the internet restrictions were imposed, the Government of India launched a widespread crackdown against civil society and politicians, arresting and jailing thousands without charge under laws such as the Public Safety Act. 

Recently, the top U.S.diplomat for South Asia, Alice Wells, stated her concern: "We remain concerned by detention of political leaders and residents, and internet restrictions. We look forward to a return to normalcy."

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D - WA) and Congressman Steve Watkins (R - KS) introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives, HR 745, that is calling on the Government of India to end communications restrictions and swiftly end the mass detentions of Kashmiris.