BSNL to install 47 hi-tech wireless stations on Uttarakhand after Chinese


30 Aug 2013
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Following reports of increased infiltration by Chinese forces in the border areas of Uttarakhand, BSNL has marked 47 zones where security will be stepped up with the installation of base transceiver stations (BTS). These stations facilitate wireless communication between devices using the BSNL network.

All five of the state's districts which border China and Nepal will have such stations, meant exclusively for Border Security Force (BSF) personnel deputed at border posts. Of these five districts — Pithoragarh, Almora, Champawat, Chamoli and Uttarkashi — Dharchula in Pithoragarh will have the majority of mobile towers, as it sees rampant flow of people from Nepal and China, according to BSNL officials here.

"The equipment that will be installed at these 47 stations will be high-tech and will help stop cross-border communications. Even conversations of soldiers will be traced by the base sub-stations," an official said.

BSNL is aiming to start 2G services at these border areas due to difficulty in laying fibre-optic lines for 3G connectivity in these parts, which are covered by snow for most of the year. A senior official in Dehradun BSNL office said, "The sites chosen are extremely close to the border and mostly located on hills. It is being done so that telecommunication of border posts' soldiers remain crystal clear."

BSNL has 1,540 BTS across the state of which majority of them are of 2G. To lift up its 3G services, the department will now install new equipment that will give seamless communication experience to its customers in Uttarakhand. It is for the first time that BSNL in Uttarakhand will provide any such services, according to the senior officials of telecom department.

"The move is part of increased security measures and not for financial benefit. We intend to install solar panels in all those areas where the BTS will be located, in order to ensure that the system continues to work in the absence of electricity," an official said.

Following the latest reports on Chinese infiltration in Champawat, the project is being expedited. Due to involvement of various ministries including home, defence and telecom, BSNL is expecting to get clearance for installation of the stations shortly, according to BSNL chief general manager (CGM) Mahak Singh.

While elaborating on possibility of installing 3G services on the border, the CGM clarified that due to persistent landslides, shoddy road connectivity and unavailability of electricity in most of the border region, initially only 2G facility will be given.
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