SRINAGAR                   -               In oc­cupied Kashmir, the wel­fare activities of non-gov­ernmental organisations (NGOs) have come to standstill after the au­thorities shut down net­work of all private mo­bile operators and the internet.

Dozens of NGOs across the Valley have played an important role dur­ing the lockdown owing to COVID-19 distributing thousands of food kits to needy, protective face-masks and Personal Pro­tective Equipment (PPE) kits among medical staff.

Businessman Ubaid Wani told newsmen at Hyderpora in Srina­gar that it was difficult for the volunteers of his NGO ‘Humanix’ to con­tinue their activities in absence of phone and in­ternet services.

“With no mobile con­nectivity it is impossible for our field volunteers to leave for distribution,” he said, adding that it was logistically not possi­ble to make food deliver­ies as locating addresses of beneficiaries without making phone calls was difficult. “We are wait­ing for mobile service to be restored so that we can resume distribution,” Ubaid Wani said.

Bashir Nadvi, Chair­man of the NGO ‘Ath­rout’ told media that the non-availability of mo­bile and internet connec­tivity had also hampered the welfare activities of his organization. He said, his NGO used to receive hundreds of phone calls every day from people in need which have drasti­cally reduced due to mo­bile service suspension. “People in need of essen­tials used to reach out to us on our helplines which have turned de­funct. We used to make phone calls to our exist­ing 750 beneficiaries for conveying them about timings to pick up their quota of essentials. But suspension of mobile networks has disturbed this entire process,” he deplored.