SRINAGAR: While communication networks are down in Kashmir Valley, the pro-freedom protesters are using the newly-erected 4G telecom towers to hoist green and black flags.
The new series of towers, set up by Anil Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm, have thus become 25-meter-high flagpoles in the trouble-torn Valley.
The youth take grave risk and employ great climbing skills to scale these towers and put up their declarations of protest, ignoring the radiation hazard warnings that the company has placed near the towers.
Reliance Jio is all set to start its 4G telecom services in the Valley, but the company may never have anticipated that its infrastructure will become a scaffold for anti-India protest.
Previous uprisings in Kashmir, in 2008 and 2010, also saw flags being hoisted atop telecom towers.
This time, the shining new towers, made of tubular galvanised steel, have caught the protesters’ attention.
Muhammad Aslam, a resident of the government colony at Soura, said that these new towers were placed at conspicuous points across the city, inadvertently making them ideal for display of the flags.
The company has placed several 4G towers along the North-South Corridor (90 Feet Road), all of which now have flags on them.
Aslam said that soon after street protests erupted in the wake of Burhan Wani’s killing, protesters laid siege to this nerve road, which connects Srinagar with Ganderbal, and raised green flags on all the towers.
Aslam said that government troops removed the flags a few days ago but the protesters have replaced them with new ones, even painting a flag on the base of one tower.