News Details

News Details

Private telcos follow BSNL lead in Jammu & Kashmir

Economic Times, Hyderabad
Tuesday, April 25, 2006

WITH mobile penetration reaching LoC and nearby areas, BSNL is taking the lead in putting up cell sites. Infrastructure has come up in Poonch, Baramulla, Kupwara, Doda and other areas. “BSNL is planning to set up another 95 towers in the next six months to meet the growing demand in J&K,” said Mr Vineet Sirpaul, vice-president (business development), Nutek. Nutek, subcontractors for Nokia and Ericsson, is setting up the BSNL network in the region. According to industry sources, Bharti Tele-Ventures has around 300 sites in J&K, while Dishnet Wireless, offering GSM mobile telephony under the Aircel brand name (recently acquired by Malaysian company Maxis), has 190 cell sites. Besides BSNL, Bharti is also providing services in Leh.
 
It has set up the highest GSM mobile tower in India, at 11,645 ft, at Qutak Gompa in the Leh region. Bharti plans to double the number of cell sites by the end of the year. Sources said Hutchison Essar is also keen to enter Jammu & Kashmir.
 
However, putting up telecom infrastructure in these areas is not an easy task. “We could put up antennaes and other equipment only at night in militancy prone areas like Rajouri and Poonch. Firing during day time prevents any work and even at night, labourers have to stop work often due to security risks,” said an official at a telco.