Concerned that civic work like road cuts, and drainage and electricity ductwork could affect the high-speed communication link at Sriharikota, India’s space port, during the satellite launch scheduled by the end of the month, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has asked the State government departments and the BSNL not to permit these works from February 25-28.
The high-level communication from the satellite launch centre comes in the wake of several instances of high-speed BSNL telecommunication lines linking Sriharikota being cut by private contractors of Tangedco and Metro Water. DT Next had earlier reported how the callous manner in which the contractors have been executing work was affecting the BSNL service lines.
The letter issued by W Sridhar, group head, telecommunications department, Sathish Dawan Space Centre – SHAR, pointed out that BSNL has been maintaining communication cables and internet optical fibre cables connecting Sriharikota. The next PSLV launch, carrying Brazilian satellite Amazonia-1, was scheduled on February 28, the letter said, asking the departments not to permit road digging works for repairs, water connection and electricity cable works in five arterial roads that carry these communication cables.
“For the success of the rocket launch, it is essential to ensure that the BSNL lines are safe and are not damaged. We need support from the highest office and postpone the works on these identified roads and this is a mission of national importance,” reads the letter, which is available with DT Next.
“Some of the contractors excavate more on the roads where the ground soil is good. This soil is replaced with debris, helping the contractors to make a quick buck. This is one of the reasons for the damages of BSNL cables,” said V Sathiabalan, former member of telecom advisory committee.
“Though the Greater Chennai Corporation has acknowledged the BSNL request, the other departments are yet to understand the seriousness of the issue; this letter is an outcome of that,” opined Sathiabalan, adding that the civic engineers and contractors do not understand the seriousness of defence internet connections. Using large earthmovers on city roads has also led to frequent damages to the underground cables, the activist added.