BSNL’S CELL phone network that had been troubling the consumers for quite a few days now, almost collapsed on Monday evening, causing a lot of inconvenience to the users. The BSNL officials attributed the problem to network congestion.
Network signals on cell phones appeared and disappeared frequently, making it difficult to make or receive calls. Any attempts to make a call were countered by messages like the subscriber is out of reach, the call cannot be completed at the moment and please check the number of have dialled. In many cases, messages like connection error and no network coverage area also bugged the users. Though the problem began in the afternoon, it worsened during the peak hours in the evening, when the network was almost jammed.
Deputy general manager (Mobile), Mahendra Srivastav attributed the problem to the congestion and claimed that there was otherwise no problem in the network.
He said that the call traffic had substantially gone up during the last few months, leading to congestion in the lines during busy hours, especially in areas like Hazratganj, Vidhan Sabha Marg and Charbagh.
“I also noticed the problem today and I will check it up if there is anything wrong with the network,” Srivastav said. The BSNL has failed to improve its network in proportion to its rising subscriber base in the city and in the circle.
With around 25 lakh cell phone subscribers in its fold, BSNL’s UP (East) circle has become the number one circle in the country.
Sops on new PCO connections
UPSET OVER the decreasing revenue from its PCOs due to falling tariffs and increasing number of private operators, the BSNL has decided to offer various incentives for those who wish to open new PCOs. As per the new scheme that could be finalised on Tuesday, the BSNL may reduce the security deposit and waive off the minimum guarantee for new PCOs. A senior officer said that the security deposit might be reduced to RS 1000 or even less. The Rs 600 charged from each PCO owner as a part of minimum business guarantee rule are also likley to be waived off. “We are planning to waive off the charges for initial three months,” said the official adding that some offers might be announced for the existing PCO owners too.
Earlier, PCOs contributed approximately 40 per cent of the total revenue of the BSNL’s UP (East) circle. But of late it had witnessed a sharp decline. Not only the tariffs had been lowered, the PCO owners had started surrendering their connections. For example, as many as 181 PCOs were surrendered in October and 170 in November in the Circle. However, the growth of PCOs is still in positive. So the circle gained net 678 new PCOs in October and 673 in November.