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The lives lost due to Kashmir's internet blackout

Hannah Ellis-Petersen and an anonymous local correspondent, reporting on the internet blackout imposed on Kashmir by the Indian Government for The Guardian:

In Kashmir, where mountainous terrain and archaic road networks mean travel can often take days, patients suffering from cardiac emergencies often don’t have access to specialist doctors or major hospitals in time. But through a volunteer network, 1,200 doctors across the region were connected to each other through four groups on WhatsApp, the instant internet messaging app, where they shared reports of cardio emergencies and sought instant diagnosis.

Over the 500 days it was running, the group operated round the clock and analysed 38,700 ECGs, handled 19,395 cases and administered thrombolysis 778 times to clear blocked veins. That was until 5 August, when an indefinite internet suspension was imposed upon the region.

The economy has been devastated, people have left the region to find work, and, based on the above, it’s likely others have died. Unfortunately, there’s no sign of things changing any time soon.

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