The unceasing internet shutdown in Manipur is a cause for alarm. It shows the extent to which the internet has become a part of our life, becoming inextricably linked with the Right to Freedom of Speech and Expression under Article 19, and the Right to Life under Article 21.
Our economy, livelihood, education system, and communication is affected by the lack of access to the internet. This lack of access plays out in the inability to pay rent, the inability to access online education resources, the inability to register for exams, and the inability to even conduct ones job.
Manipur, which has been reeling under an internet shutdown for the last 78 days is a testament to this. The fact that an internet shutdown was able to stop even the wheel of justice for two entire months is a point of particular concern. In that light, the order of the Manipur High Court which called for the alleviation of the internet shutdown in the State is a welcome one, though the particular manner of implementation still leaves a lot to be desired.