Telecom regulator TRAI on Monday advised that the Department of Telecommunications ought to method the defence ministry for accessing a part of its optical fibre community or appropriate bandwidth to increase telecom protection within the far-flung areas of Himachal Pradesh.
The regulator beneficial that in 4 districts — Lahaul and Spiti, Mandi, Kullu and Chamba — the villages which can be but to be related underneath BharatNet Project ought to be instantly related on VSAT media that may be surrendered as quickly because the optical fibre cable (OFC) backhaul is made obtainable.
The recognized districts have 181 uncovered villages, of which 14 are deliberate to be lined underneath the ‘354 villages scheme’ and 142 are to be lined underneath ‘Saturation of 4G Mobile’ scheme of USOF. These schemes nonetheless pass over 25 villages from telecom protection.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) in its suggestions on “improving telecom connectivity and infrastructure in far-flung areas of Himachal Pradesh” advised that the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) ought to take up with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) for allocation of 1 or two pairs of OFC on NFS community for extending telecom protection (together with broadband providers) to the villages positioned in far-flung or border areas within the state underneath BharatNet challenge.
“In case the same is not feasible, MoD may be approached to allocate suitable bandwidth on its existing functional OFC to extend the telecom coverage to such villages,” Trai stated.
Under Project Kranti, also called Network For Spectrum (NFS), a nationwide OFC community is being carried out by BSNL, whereby virtually 60,000 kilometres of OFC is being rolled out for unique use by defence forces in lieu of 65MHz spectrum surrendered by the defence for public sale by the DoT.
The regulator stated that it’s already in receipt of a reference on enabling ICR for distant and hilly areas steadily susceptible to pure disaster-based emergency conditions and it’ll provide you with separate suggestions on this regard after due consultations.
TRAI has beneficial that capital expenditure (Capex) and working expenditure (Opex) required for offering telecom infrastructure and connectivity to the 25 uncovered villages (falling underneath the three income districts of Lahaul and Spiti, Kullu and Chamba) ought to be funded by the federal government by way of Universal Services Obligation Fund (USOF).
“The authority recommends that DoT may take up the case with the state government of HP for not levying any RoW (right of way) charges to telecom service providers and IP-Is for connecting remote and hilly areas in the state including all locations in four districts,” TRAI stated.
The regulator has advised that the DoT ought to take up with the state authorities, NHAI and BRO, that in all street development, street widening or different associated works ought to be achieved with prior coordination with telecom operators, and the legal responsibility of contractor for making funds for damages to telecom networks ought to be included ab-initio within the contracts.
“DoT should also take up with the state government of HP to explore the possibility of constructing utility ducts in all future road widening and new road construction projects. This will help in quick roll-out of all utility infrastructure, including telecom, in the state,” TRAI stated.
The regulator has advised that the DoT ought to take up with the Himachal authorities to contemplate offering electrical energy to telecom websites inside 15 days of connections request at utility or industrial tariff and take into account waiving off final mile set up fees for extending electrical connection to telecom websites in distant and hilly areas.