The cost of shutting down the Internet reaches 2.7 billion dollars in the largest country in the world
According to a new report by Top10VPN - a site that tracks VPNs and privacy tools - India has lost nearly $ 2.7 billion due to internet shutdowns in 2020, more than the sum total of the next 10 countries on the chart.
India has a large number of internet users in the world, therefore, when the central or state government decides to shut down the internet for one reason or another, a large number of people and companies are affected, and it leads to a great financial loss.
India has been offline for longer than any other country, recording 8,927 hours of blackouts in the past year.
And according to internetshutdowns.in - a site that tracks internet blockages in India - the internet has been shut down 83 times in the country in 2020.
The biggest contributor to India's numbers was the internet shutdown in Jammu and Kashmir, which lasted from August 2019 to March 2020.
The government blocked the internet in the region in August 2019 - which is home to more than 7 million people - after it abolished Article 370 of the Indian Constitution which provides for the autonomy of the Jammu and Kashmir state government in some administrative regions.
And in March 2020, when the state government removed restrictions on accessing prominent sites, a large number of mobile phone users were still using 2G to connect to the Internet, as this was the only service available to them.
A report by the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce indicated that internet shutdowns and restrictions in the region caused a loss of up to $ 5.3 billion.
While it is difficult to determine which numbers are more accurate, it is clear that people in India have suffered huge losses as a result of the internet blocking.
And earlier in the year, the government also blocked the internet in various regions due to protests against the CAA Citizenship Amendment Act that grants citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from select neighboring countries.
Ironically, while internet access was banned in several regions, the central government announced last year that it plans to bring fiber-optic broadband to all Indian villages in the next three years.