Parshuram Jayanti, Ramzan greetings via social media held hostage to low-speed 2G

Sanjeev K. Sharma

JAMMU, Apr 25: Though Mohinder Sharma and Tariq Janjua ultimately succeeded in extending Parshuram Jayanti and Ramzan greetings to their loved ones via social media but they expressed strong resentment as the only platform of internet left to them on the auspicious day for greeting others is also in shambles in the absence of 4G services in Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory.
“If high speed internet has any security concern for the authorities concerned, they can even allow 4G internet services for at least one or two days during our religious festivals,” Mohinder Sharma, 54, a banker told the Excelsior while referring to the auspicious day of Parshuram Jayanti.
He also said that people are unable to visit temples in the ongoing restrictions of lockdown to offer obeisance so high speed internet could have helped them a lot in sending video messages, pictures etc easily to greet others on such festivals as doing so with the available 2G services consumes a lot of time and many times one even ends up with no success.
Twenty-six year old Tariq Janjua said that he strictly follows the instructions of lockdown and is staying at home from where he will offer prayers in the holy month of Ramzan.
“Ultimately we can only share our best wishes with our loved ones using social media but with 2G internet we are facing a lot of problems in doing so,” he said, adding that friends and relatives have send him a lot of messages on WhatsApp which he is trying to download but it is a time consuming exercise with the 2G internet services.
“Only typed Whatsapp messages can be read easily while uploading and downloading videos, pictures etc on Facebook and other social media platforms becomes a tough and time consuming exercise with the available 2G internet services in J&K,” Janjua further said.
Echoing similar views, Shama Akhtar, Jammu Municipal Corporation Councillor said: “The holy month of Ramzan has started today and I am extending greetings to the people of my Ward, relatives and others using the available 2G internet service which is giving a lot of problems.”
She also said that she is unable to download video and graphic messages send to her by her loved ones.
“The authorities concerned should think properly and immediately restore the 4G internet services in Jammu and Kashmir as there are many more problems being faced by the people here in the absence of high speed internet,” she maintained.
When contacted Pandit Rumil Sharma, priest at ancient Bhairav Ji Temple in Jammu said even on the religious festivals people of Jammu are cooperating with the authorities and are staying at home as per the instructions of the Government in the ongoing nationwide lockdown.
“Today it is Parshuram Jayanti and tomorrow it will be Akshay Tritiya. In the present nationwide lockdown the only safe way of celebrating these religious festivals is to perform all the important rituals linked to such festivals at home and extend greetings to the relatives, friends and other loved ones via social media,” he said.
The priest further claimed that people are facing problems in extending greetings related to these festivals on social media using the low speed 2G internet services.
It is pertinent to mention here that in the ongoing nationwide lockdown triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic the authorities have instructed the followers of all the religions to remain indoors to offer prayers and perform other rituals during the religious festivals as visits to religious places and congregations are strictly restricted.
Earlier the auspicious Navratras have also passed away with world renowned shrine of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Ji and other temples remaining shut and now on the start of the holy month of Ramzan, Muslims are asked to offer prayers at homes and not to visit mosques because gatherings at mosques may accelerate the spread of dreaded Coronavirus infection.
Many Muslim clerics have also have instructed the community members to offer Ramzan prayers at home.
It was August 5, 2019 when the internet services were snapped in entire J&K after the Union Government scrapped Article 370 and 35-A giving special status to J&K and reorganized the erstwhile J&K State into two Union Territories—J&K, and Ladakh.
However, 2G internet services were restored after a lot of hue and cry was raised by the different sections of the society while the demand of 4G internet services is also picking pace at present especially in the wake of ongoing nationwide lockdown clamped as a preventive measure to control Coronavirus pandemic.
Due to the lockdown schools and other educational institutions are conducting online classes and are sending them home task to the students via internet but the available 2G services is becoming a problem in internet related works.
Under these circumstances, many sections of the society, students, traders etc are demanding restoration of 4G internet services in Jammu and Kashmir.

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