I got a message from my cousin asking if I could recommend any VPN for him as all the VPN’s he has tried so far have stopped working anymore in Kashmir.
After scraping the article 370 from Indian constitution on 5th August 2019 the internet services especially the mobile phone internet remained suspended.
The service was later revised on 25th Jan 2020 after being suspended nearly for six months, but as per the official statement the service could only be used to access 301 websites approved by the administration.
Now to access more sites by the user they referred to the VPN’s which redirect the traffic and jumps to restriction limits. Now ask each other which VPN they use has been everyday affair in Kashmir.
I being in Delhi has not felt the pain of being in communication restrictions but I could relate to the situation they are facing. Although, I recently visited the valley and experienced the same situation but being there for a quite shot time, it was easy for me to overcome the situation.
But with this message I got my nerves up and remembered when last year I was on a visit to Shanghai in China and faced the same situation. I could not check most of the websites then which I used check every day. This was the time when I came to know VPN.
So, as we know that China has banned most of the social media platforms like Facebook, Google, WhatsApp etc but not internet. Alternatively they have their own social media like WeChat, TaoBoa etc.
The point I want to highlight is that China is not actually limiting people to communicate but restricting use of the apps and websites which are mostly developed and operated from west. But when it comes to Kashmir the entires communication is being shut.
There has been many occasions when the internet and mobile communications has been shut in Kashmir and this time it was for more than 6 months, even after only 2G services are restored.
This has definitely affected people and has hit the economy of Kashmir. During this time many people liked to visit Kashmir to enjoy snow and go for the snow skating in Gulmarg but they could not share their memories on their social media handles.
Situation like this has been the everyday affair and people are used to it. Now this has become the new normal in Kashmir.
Tourists visiting Kashmir would definitely feel the difference without internet. Right now being the best time to visit Kashmir to enjoy the snow slopes and snow skating in Gulmarg. One should definitely have VPN in their phones if they want to access the 2G internet services to share their moments with the peers around their virtual world.
But it may have some adverse effects either in the form of data loss or some times it could take you into a legal trouble.