Gradual improvement in telecom services in flood-hit Kashmir

Telecom services in flood-hit Kashmir Valley are slowly being restored with BSNL resuming connectivity to 7,000 landline phones and 14 mobile towers in Srinagar city.

PTI| Updated: Sep 10, 2014, 19:37 PM IST

New Delhi: Telecom services in flood-hit Kashmir Valley are slowly being restored with BSNL resuming connectivity to 7,000 landline phones and 14 mobile towers in Srinagar city.

Private sector operator Bharti Airtel's network has been restored in Jammu, Kargil, Ladakh and Leh. Airtel said inter operator roaming has been configured ? thus allowing customers to make calls by latching onto other networks in areas where Airtel network is yet to be restored.

Aircel is providing connectivity to people through its 3G sites and is also working to restore 2G sites.

State-run BSNL said 14 base transceiver stations (BTS) or mobile towers are functioning in Srinagar providing connectivity to 15,000 mobile phones whereas 7,000 landline connections and 2,000 broadband connections are also working.

The operator said another 40 BTS will start functioning later today at 10 PM with restoration of another mobile exchange.

Flood waters started receding in Kashmir Valley today.

Bharti Airtel's network has been restored in Jammu, Kargil, Ladakh and Leh. Airtel said inter operator roaming has been configured ? thus allowing customers to make calls by latching onto other networks in areas where Airtel network is yet to be restored.

Aircel is providing connectivity to people through its 3G sites and is also working to restore 2G sites.

Bharti Infratel which provides tower infrastructure to mobile operators said 35 of its sites in Kashmir Valley are up and running and in the next couple of days, large chunk of its network will be restored.

Bharti Infratel MD DS Rawat said the firm has around 1400 sites in valley and full restoration will take around a week but a large chunk will be restored in next couple of days.

He said 600-700 sites are up but they are not connected to Srinagar, which is the common aggregation point for valley. Rawat added in the next few days, the sites will be connected to Srinagar.

Bharti Infratel has set up three war rooms in Srinagar, Jammu and Delhi to tackle the crises.

Airtel said 5 VSAT terminals with WiFi equipment were flown into Srinagar Airport yesterday and it has thereafter set up a public WiFi Hotspot, allowing everyone to use data services.