Dear Editor,At a time when the country has access to 4G high-speed internet and is conducting webinars and online classes during lockdown, Jammu students are suffering with 2G mobile internet services. Since the abrogation of Article 370, the student community of Jammu & Kashmir has suffered immensely due to communication blackouts and closing of educational institutions for infinity. The excitement of online classes dies where internet is restricted to 2G services. It becomes difficult to understand what teacher is trying to say and vice versa. Online classes here in J&K are nothing more than an eyewash. Students from across the country are getting benefitted, but here in J&K, we, the students, are grappling with 2G mobile internet. Everyone cannot afford to have a wifi connection at home. Teaching and learning in the UT has been reduced to recording audios and short video clips and sharing them with students on WhatsApp, who have to struggle for hours to download a short audio/video-clip.It is pertinent to mention here that a video clip of 10-15 minutes might take hours to download and both teachers and students have to wait for hours to upload/download an audio clip of 25-30 MB over WhatsApp via 2G mobile internet.Students are frustrated and tired of using 2G mobile internet. We are not able to study and prepare for competitive exams due to poor internet speed. How would we compete with other students if situation remain the same?While appreciating the need to ensure security in volatile region, it is not in the interest of the nation to keep students and youth cut-off from the rest of the country besides denying them opportunities by aggravating digital divide. 4G internet services was restored in Udhampur and Ganderbal districts and there is no untoward incident till date. So, I don’t think there is any problem in restoring it in other districts of J&K for the welfare of children and youth.Through your esteemed daily, I would like to appeal Government to restore 4G mobile internet services in Jammu so that students can attend online classes and prepare for competitive exams hassle free.Sugandh Sharma,Via-e-mail.
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