A publication focused on internet privacy revealed that India lost over $1.3 billion in 2019 as a result of major internet shutdowns in regions like Jammu & Kashmir, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Rajasthan, Tripura, and Uttar Pradesh. As estimated by Top10VPN, the loss is the third-highest among 21 countries who experienced major internet shutdowns last year and the combined toll from all cyber blockades stood at $8.05 billion.
Jammu & Kashmir faced the longest blackout as people in that state were without the internet for around five months. “The shutdown in Kashmir is one of the longest internet shutdowns to have ever occurred and cost the Indian economy nearly $1.1 billion in 2019,” Woodhams and Migliano said.
The internet shutdown in the North East in relation to the Citizenship Amendment Act resulted in around $102 million of economic repercussions.
“India imposes internet restrictions more often than any other country, with over 100 shutdowns documented in 2019. As they tend to be highly-targeted, even down to the level of blacking out individual city districts for a few hours while security forces try to restore order, many of these incidents have not been included in this report, which instead focused on larger region-wide shutdowns,” Migliano said.