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Call to augment NE telecom network

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Sept 22 � Assam and other NE States need to augment the existing telecommunication network to meet the challenges which will emerge from natural disasters such as earthquakes.

The North East is among those regions in India where the telecom network is still in a nascent stage and, therefore, there is a need to take stock of the threats to the network before remedial action is taken.

Stating this, a well-placed telecom expert, who wished anonymity, identified remote areas, underlining the importance of network coverage in those. In many flood-prone areas and hilly regions with vital land routes, there is still no cell phone network.

He pointed out the areas in Karbi Anglong and NC Hills where numerous settlements are yet to have phone connectivity. Reports from those areas can only emerge a day after an incident takes place. This will prove extremely costly in case of a major earthquake or any other natural calamity.

In the Lumding-Badarpur hill section of NF Railway, there are pockets which are not served by any cell phone network as a result of which Railway engineers have to rely on expensive satellite phones, the only alternative available.

Arunachal Pradesh with special geo-strategic importance is another State underserved by communication networks. In many parts, it is only the Indian Army that can send and receive crucial information through its own dedicated network.

Expanding and improving the wireless network available to the police could be one way of gearing up for seamless communication during times when other networks are down. Dedicated satellite communication hubs with adequate power back-up is the other possibility that the State Governments of the region need to explore, he mentioned.

When contacted, eminent engineer and educationist, Anup Gogoi underlined the importance of secure communication networks during a natural disaster and spoke in favour of amateur or ham radio. Experts agree that emergency services are seriously hit in the absence of a robust telecom network.

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Call to augment NE telecom network

GUWAHATI, Sept 22 � Assam and other NE States need to augment the existing telecommunication network to meet the challenges which will emerge from natural disasters such as earthquakes.

The North East is among those regions in India where the telecom network is still in a nascent stage and, therefore, there is a need to take stock of the threats to the network before remedial action is taken.

Stating this, a well-placed telecom expert, who wished anonymity, identified remote areas, underlining the importance of network coverage in those. In many flood-prone areas and hilly regions with vital land routes, there is still no cell phone network.

He pointed out the areas in Karbi Anglong and NC Hills where numerous settlements are yet to have phone connectivity. Reports from those areas can only emerge a day after an incident takes place. This will prove extremely costly in case of a major earthquake or any other natural calamity.

In the Lumding-Badarpur hill section of NF Railway, there are pockets which are not served by any cell phone network as a result of which Railway engineers have to rely on expensive satellite phones, the only alternative available.

Arunachal Pradesh with special geo-strategic importance is another State underserved by communication networks. In many parts, it is only the Indian Army that can send and receive crucial information through its own dedicated network.

Expanding and improving the wireless network available to the police could be one way of gearing up for seamless communication during times when other networks are down. Dedicated satellite communication hubs with adequate power back-up is the other possibility that the State Governments of the region need to explore, he mentioned.

When contacted, eminent engineer and educationist, Anup Gogoi underlined the importance of secure communication networks during a natural disaster and spoke in favour of amateur or ham radio. Experts agree that emergency services are seriously hit in the absence of a robust telecom network.