PDP opposes blocking of Facebook, YouTube in J&K



Srinagar: Opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) thursday expressed concern over blocking of social networking sites Facebook and YouTube on mobile internet connections across the state saying it could agitate Kashmiri youths.

"The young boys and girls use internet to stay connected and express themselves... Instead of coming on streets if they express themselves on internet, it should be encouraged," Leader of Opposition Mehbooba Mufti said in the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly.

At the outset of the Question hour, Mehbooba raised the issue of blocking the two sites on mobile internet connections saying besides blocking access to the two sites, the servers have been slowed down.

"It is the need of the day We may not be using it as much but the youth are dependent on it," she said.

The state government had directed the internet service providers to block the two websites if they faced technical difficulties in blocking the anti-Islam video on these sites, which had led to widespread protests.

"Under the garb of (blocking the) video, an informal ban has been imposed on these sites," Mehbooba claimed.

Mufti urged Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone to issue necessary directions to the government in this regard.

The Speaker, however, refused to issue the directions until the Government will have to come up with its statement. "If the government does not come up of their own, then the directions can be passed," Lone added.

Balwant Singh Mankotia of National Panthers Party and M Y Tarigami of CPI(M) supported the PDP president's demand.

While the two sites cannot be accessed from mobile internet connections, the same are available on broadband connections through fixed telephone lines and GPRS connections.

PTI