BBMP's (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike) drive to cut off Optical Fibre Cable of the telecom and internet service providers by treating all over-the-ground cables as unauthorized is leading to huge outages and inconvenience to the citizens, COAI said.
Rajan S Mathews, Director General, COAI stated, "Such fiber cutting activities will hurt businesses, citizens and Government services in the Silicon Valley of India immensely. In the consumers' interest, the industry is seeking an early appointment with the relevant authorities to discuss, deliberate and arrive at a mutually agreeable solution, as soon as possible, and seek stoppage of any form of coercive measures to force a solution."
"The TSPs are keen and willing to fully co-operate with the concerned authorities and government departments/agencies to regularise the cable laying process. The industry is open to dialogue and resolution immediately," he further added.
However, the telcos claim to have obtained permissions and had originally laid them underground.
COAI also said that the disconnection of the cable by BBMP is a huge blow to the Digital Bengaluru plan, which will severely impact essential services including Point of sale purchase applications at retail outlets and various Government services in Bengaluru.
It will also result in a complete communication black-out threatening emergency situations if calls can't be connected and data connectivity is lost. This action will not only jeopardize the operations of companies/industries at India's Silicon Valley but will also have a huge impact on consumers and citizens.
Meanwhile, TR Dua, Director General, Tower & Infrastructure Providers Association (TAIPA) commented, "Before taking any suo-moto coercive action, BBMP should have called industry for a bilateral discussion to resolve the subject matter of concerns. This impulsive action will impact the overall internet connectivity and businesses especially IT firms in Bangalore."
Furthermore, COAI pointed out that the telecom industry has made immense investments in setting-up infrastructure in the Karnataka circle to provide fast connectivity to the citizens, as well as to the IT industry.
Over 1,30,200 Base Transceiver Stations (BTSs) have been installed in Karnataka state to support telephone, mobile and internet communications. This alone equals Rs. 13,000 crores in network investments. The sector also generates approx. Rs. 6,000 crores per annum in revenue in Karnataka alone, from which it contributes over approx.
Rajesh Chharia, President, Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI) also in support of the concerns added, "BBMP should come with an Over Head policy as major developmental work is going on in the City. All cities, Nationally and Internationally, have OH cables."