Nepal | July 21, 2019

NTA plans to manage overhead telecommunications wires

Himalayan News Service

KATHMANDU, August 16

Managing dangling wires of telecommunications lines has always been a headache for the government. To manage such wires, Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) is working on to explore possibilities including a ducting system.

The telecom regulator plans to implement a pilot project in this regard in the current fiscal year and has allocated Rs 20 million for the purpose. According to NTA, it will hire a consultant to find ways to manage telecommunications wires and a guideline for extension of such wires will also be introduced.

Despite a number of efforts in the past, the government has not been able to manage wires of telecom companies, internet service providers and cable television operators due to lack of coordination among the concerned agencies and no clear rule on extension lines of such services. Entangled wires of landline phones, and cable internet and television have been tarnishing the beauty of the city.

Last year too, the government had initiated a campaign to manage the electricity, telephone and cable television wires in major road routes, as part of city beautification plan for the 18th SAARC summit. However, the plan could not yield the desired result due to lack of effective coordination between the Kathmandu Metropolitan City, Nepal Telecom (NT) and Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).

The plan unveiled by NTA for the current fiscal year is targeted only for managing telecommunications wires which include landline wires, optical fibre cables and lines of internet service providers. “Once there is a guideline to be followed by service providers, a pilot project will be implemented in the first phase to manage the wires of telecommunications services,” said Achyuta Nanda Mishra, assistant spokesperson of NTA.

As per NTA’s plan, it will select a consultant within mid-December this year. The consultant will produce a report along with various plans to organise the unmanaged wires in a better way. NT officials said the problem of dangling wires will not be solved unless there is effective coordination among agencies like NEA, NT, municipalities, internet service providers and cable television operators.

“I do not think managing only telecommunications wire would bring any significant change in the city as there is a huge problem of cable television wires and delay in relocation of NEA poles after the road expansion,” said an official at NT. The official added they have been gradually relocating poles and wires in the main road routes that were widened a few years ago under UCPN (Maoist) government.

The Maoist government had also unveiled a plan to move the electricity, telecom and television cables underground and remove all the utility poles in the Tinkune-Maitighar road. However, the plan had failed due to lack of coordination among concerned agencies and shortage of resources.

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