A resident of East Khasi Hills district has filed a PIL against the state government’s decision to ban the internet on the excuse “to maintain law and order”.
In a letter to the Chief Justice of the Meghalaya High Court, Joannes JTL Lamare said, “…as a concerned citizen of the nation, I would like to request for an upright and justified judgment to address these issues.”
“I may be a normal citizen of India but living in this great Land, I am blessed that the Constitution of India (COI) under Article 14 states that “The State shall not deny to any person Equality before the Law or the equal Protection of the laws within the territory of India”, however in the case of Meghalaya, the citizens are being treated unequally and we are being subjected to utmost discrimination because the Right that the citizens enjoy are now being infringed without proper and concrete explanation. Also that under Article 21 which states “Protection of Life and Personal Liberty”, I can claim my right that the Government of Meghalaya had violated by shutting down the Internet Connection,” he said.
According to him, this had been a regular and frequent action by the Meghalaya government whenever it feels like and that the citizens had to bear and this had inturn caused great inconvenience.
Stating that the government had only one excuse which is to maintain law and order, Lamare however said, “I have a serious question to the Government of Meghalaya, “Is banning the Internet the only solution to bring, maintain and uphold Law and order?”
“I do not understand as to why large sections of the society had to be deprived of the use of Internet facilities provided by the service providers and moreover when the Citizens themselves pay from their own pocket the Internet Bills,” he added.
The state government had banned mobile internet since Sunday night following the violent protests against the alleged killing of the former HNLC leader Cheristerfield Thangkhiew in his residence at Mawlai Kynton Massar on August 13.
Incidents of stone pelting and arsons were reported during the funeral of Thangkhiew.