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JK: Centre likely to lift ban on pre-paid SIM from January

By Mukhtar Ahmad
December 30, 2009 10:28 IST
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The central government is likely to lift the ban on the pre-paid mobile phones in Jammu and Kashmir that was imposed in early November for security reasons.

At a meeting called by the union home secretary in New Delhi, the issue was discussed and officials have decided to allow pre-paid mobile service in the state in January.

The ban had hit around four million users in the state and had led to anger among the users and service providers.

The ruling National Conference and opposition Peoples Democratic Party had strongly opposed the move, which had cost the jobs of thousands of youth in the state.

The ban had been challenged in the apex court by the National Panthers Party president professor Bhim Singh.

The Centre has, however, issued strict instructions to service providers asking them to go in for foolproof checks on the antecedents of service users at the time of issuing SIM (Subscriber identity module) cards to them.

"All the service providers operating in the state have been asked to make fail proof and fool proof arrangements to verify the antecedents of the new and the old users to stop the misuse of the service," a senior police officer said.

"Hopefully the service will be allowed to resume across the state from January 8 next year," he added.
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Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar
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