Reporter & Camera: Syed Shahriyar
Producer: Vatsala Singh
Video Editor: Puneet Bhatia
Owais Ahmad travelled 500 km from Tangdhar in Kashmir’s Kupwara district to Banihal in Jammu — all for few minutes of internet access. His scholarship application was due for submission.
Owais, however, failed to submit his application, despite a two-day journey and Rs 2,500 total expense.
Train services between Srinagar and Banihal resumed on 17 November. Since then, internet cafes of the highway town are packed with customers from Kashmir, who come to file their GST, licence applications, tax returns, and for other official work. In the world’s longest internet shutdown in a democracy, Kashmir has been without internet since 4 August.
For this story, The Quint travelled 110 km on the ‘Internet Express’ that shuttles Kashmiris from their region of internet blackout to somewhere they can be online for a few moments.
(With inputs from Mukhtar Zahoor)