Port Blair, May 31: The Member of Parliament, Siri Kuldeep Rai Sharma chaired the Telecom Advisory Committee meeting held at the BSNL office on May 30, 2023. The meeting held in presence of CGM, BSNL, A&N Telecom Circle and other senior officers of BSNL, served as a platform to discuss and address various pressing matters concerning the A&N Islands’ telecommunications sector.

During the meeting, the Member of Parliament raised many issues; among those issues the most prominent issue was expediting the laying of the second Optical Fibre Cable from Diglipur to Puri.

Highlighting the crucial issue of providing parallel internet connectivity through undersea OFC cable to A&N Islands from Puri in Odisha to Diglipur (North & Middle Andaman), the Member of Parliament said that while the high bandwidth internet would be a core requirement for the IT & ITeS industry, the single CANI OFC network will not boost the investors’ sentiment in the absence of a parallel network as believed by industry veterans.

He added that aspiring industrialists in IT & ITeS sector are concerned over any sudden breakdown or failure of the existing CANI OFC network which will paralyze the IT & ITeS industries besides other digital services like e.banking, e.governance, e.trading, e.procurement, e.teaching etc.

He pointed out that even a single day of outage over the breakdown of CANI OFC would prove costly for the industry as feared by the industry veterans. As such, additional connectivity would insulate the industry against temporary outages and connectivity failure.

Hence the Member of Parliament suggested a parallel internet connectivity through undersea OFC cable to A&N Islands from Puri in Odisha to Diglipur (North & Middle Andaman) a shortest route in addition to the existing CANI OFC cable which will ensure uninterrupted connectivity even if the other grids has failed due to any an unforeseen reason.

Additionally, the Member of Parliament urged the representatives from BSNL to establish power backup facilities for all towers scattered across Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Recognizing the vulnerability of the region to power cuts and natural calamities, he emphasized the significance of uninterrupted communication services for the public.

The Member of Parliament also demanded to install Mobile towers with 4G connectivity in all the inhabited areas of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, including far-flung Islands, where Islanders are not getting mobile networks.