Phone wire theft hits NT coffers hard

Nepalgunj, September 6:

Theft of telephone wire has caused loss of Rs 10 million revenue in Nepalgunj, Kohalpur, Gulariya, Surkhet and other areas in the mid-western development region in the last two years.

“Wire theft in these areas has caused loss of Rs 94,30,000 revenue,” NT senior engineer at the mid-western regional directorate, Namkar Neupane said, adding, “Phone wires worth Rs 75,54,000 were stolen in Nepalgunj, Kohalpur, Gulariya, Surkhet and adjoining areas in the last two years.”

“Some 800 landline phones in Nepalgunj, 250 in Kohalpur and 90 in Gulariya were disrupted due to wire theft causing a loss of revenue worth Rs 22,92,000,” he said.

NT regional director Khadga Bahadur Basnet said even wires laid underground are being stolen.

Banke district police chief Ghanshyam Bhatt said so far 20 persons had been arrested for stealing phone wires.

“Wire thieves are freed from custody due to political intervention,” police inspector Binod Sharma said. Advocate Krishna Prasad Bhattarai said the guilty should be booked under the Essential Goods and Protection Act. Banke CDO Bishnu Pokhrel said security bodies, NT and journalists should join hands to control the theft.