The Haryana government on Saturday ordered the suspension of mobile Internet and bulk SMS services in the communally charged Nuh district till August 28 in view of a call for a ‘shobha yatra’.
The government announced the decision, apprehending the spread of rumours through social media ahead of or during Monday’s rally.
The Nuh authorities had recently denied permission to hold a religious procession in the district on August 28 after an earlier one in July was disrupted following communal violence.
The order to suspend mobile Internet was issued by Additional Chief Secretary (Home) TVSN Prasad on Saturday.
The district administration has also imposed Section 144 of the CrPC, prohibiting the assembly of four or more people in an area, as a precautionary measure. This order will be effective from August 26-28, said officials.
During this period, no person will be allowed to carry weapons such as licensed firearms, lathis, axes and others.
The Haryana government had earlier suspended mobile Internet services in Nuh after communal clashes broke out.
Six people, including two home guards and a cleric, died in the communal clashes that erupted in Nuh when a religious procession of the Vishva Hindu Parishad was attacked by a mob on July 31.
“…This order is issued to prevent disturbance of peace and public order in the jurisdiction of district Nuh and shall be in force with effect from August 26, 1200 hours, to August 28, 2359 hours,” the order issued by Prasad read.
On Friday, Nuh Deputy Commissioner Dhirendra Khadgata wrote to Prasad, bringing to his notice that the Sarv Jatiya Hindu Mahapanchayat had called for a Brij Mandal Shoba Yatra in the district on August 28.
There is an apprehension about the misuse of social media/bulk messages by anti-social elements to disturb the peace, he had written.
“Therefore, it is necessary to suspend all mobile Internet and bulk SMS services in Nuh district to avoid any untoward situation,” Khadgata wrote, requesting Prasad to issue the necessary directions.
In his Saturday order, Prasad said there is a clear potential for the disruption of public utilities, damage to public assets and amenities and disturbance of public law and order in Nuh via the spread of rumours and inflammatory content through the Internet.
He ordered the temporary suspension of the mobile Internet services (2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, CDMA, GPRS), bulk SMS (excluding banking and mobile recharge) and all dongle services provided on mobile networks, except voice calls.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by String Reveals staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)