News Details

News Details

BSNL plans 95 towers in 6 months

Economic Times, Kolkata
Tuesday, April 25, 2006

“BSNL is planning to set up another 95 towers in the next six months to meet the growing demand in J&K,” said Vineet Sirpaul, vice president (business development), Nutek.
 
Nutek, subcontractor 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 — operating under the Airtel brand name — is also providing services in Leh.
 
It has set up the highest GSM mobile tower in India, at 11,645 feet, 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 J&K.
 
However, putting up telecom infrastructure in these areas is not an easy task. “We could put up an antennae and other equipment only at night in militancy-prone areas like Rajouri and Poonch. Firing during daytime prevented any work and even at night, labourers have to stop work often due to security risks,” said an official at a telco.
 
Risks notwithstanding, residents are keen to own cellphones. “The waiting list for BSNL mobile connections in border villages of J&K is running into thousands. When residents come to know a mobile tower is being set up, they come to help officials in the hope of getting faster connections,” the official said.