The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) today in a press release said the impact of Cyclone Yaas was minimal on Telecom. The Common Alert Protocol (CAP) of DoT/CDoT has been extensively used by State Disaster Management Authorities (SDMAs) on 24th May and 25th May in West Bengal, Odisha, and Andhra Pradesh to disseminate the cyclone alert messages free of cost.
DoT said in a communique that more than 6 crore bulk SMS/messages have been sent in local languages alerting local residents with 3.87 crore sent in West Bengal, 2.43 crore sent in Odisha, and 36.4 lakhs sent in Andhra Pradesh.
Additionally, for the first time Voice Alert Messages were also sent facilitated by DoT with the help of telecom service providers using Outbound Dialler (OBD) infrastructure with more than 60 lakh subscribers reached through OBD in local languages. The telecom service providers undertook the outreach activity free of cost with 36.5 lakhs reached in West Bengal and 21.5 lakhs reached in Odisha.
Cyclone Yaas has impacted many districts including East Medinapur, West Medinapur, Bakura , South 24 Pargana and Jhargram in West Bengal and Balasore, Bhadrak, Jagatsingpur, Kendrapara, Jajpur, Keonjhar and Mayurbhanj in Odisha.
DoT undertook Review and Restoration action meetings at the level of Secretary, DoT prior to the cyclone and also today in the morning and in the evening. Telecom Service Providers (Reliance Jio, Airtel, Vodafone-Idea and BSNL) and Infrastructure Providers (ATC, INDUS, ASCEND, Tower Vision and Summit Digital) and their Association TAIPA participated in the aforesaid mentioned.
DoT also took regular feedback from senior officers of the state governments with Intra Circular Roaming (ICR) ordered by the telecom secretary in multiple districts including East Medinipur, West Medinipur, Bakura, Jhargramand and South 24 Pargana in West Bengal Balasore, Bhadrak, Jagatsingpur, Kendrapara, Jajpur, Keonjhar and Mayurbhanj in Odisha.
“This will enable customers/ subscribers to latch on whichever telecom network is available in their area without any extra cost. More than 1000 Optical fibre and restoration team were stationed in districts likely to be impacted prior to the landfall of the cyclone,” said DoT in a press release.
“Senior officers of BSNL were designated at district level who coordinated with district collectors. Senior DoT officers and TSP functionaries coordinated with the State Nodal Officers at the State Capitals. The combined efforts of TSPs and Infrastructure Providers coordinated by the Department of Telecommunications has ensured that restoration of the damaged network has commenced and even the minimal outages in the telecom networks will be restored very quickly,” added DoT.