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Mobile Internet services suspended in Patiala a day after clashes

Stones lie on the ground after a clash broke out between followers of Shiv Sena and pro-Khalistani Sikh organisations, near Kali Mata Mandir in Patiala, Friday, April 29, 2022.

Stones lie on the ground after a clash broke out between followers of Shiv Sena and pro-Khalistani Sikh organisations, near Kali Mata Mandir in Patiala, Friday, April 29, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

The Punjab government on April 30 suspended mobile Internet services in Patiala district from 9.30 a.m. to 6 p.m., a day after different groups of people clashed amid a confrontation surrounding the holding of a foot march in the city against the pro-Khalistan movement attempt.

The government also transferred the Inspector General of Police (Patiala range), Senior Superintendent of Police and Superintendent of Police of Patiala, according to an official statement.

According to the order from the State Home Department, mobile Internet services, all SMS services and all dongle services etc. provided on mobile networks except voice calls in district Patiala shall remain suspended. The order has been given under Rule 2 of Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency or Public Safety) Rules, 2017.

The order added that to thwart the designs and activities of anti-national and anti-social elements, maintain peace and communal harmony and prevent any loss of life or damage to public and private property, it was necessary to take measures to maintain law and order in Patiala district in public interest to stop the spread of misinformation and rumours through various social media platforms.

A curfew has been imposed in Punjab’s Patiala district from 7 p.m. on April 29 to 6 a.m. on April 30, after the clash in which four persons, including two police personnel, were injured.

A source in the administration told The Hindu that the Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray) had sought permission to hold a march in the city against the backdrop of the announcement by Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) to mark the foundation day of Khalistan on April 29.

The permission was, however, denied by the administration. In response to the Shiv Sena’s plan to hold the march, a group of Khalistan sympathisers had announced to a counter-march. The police arrested Harish Singla, working president of the Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray), for taking out the procession without permission and instigating violence.


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Printable version | Jun 28, 2022 6:28:46 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/mobile-internet-services-suspended-in-patiala-a-day-after-clashes/article65369471.ece