79 2G and 372 3G towers to be commissioned

Telecom major Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) intends to provide 3.6 lakh new mobile connections under Ernakulam SSA—secondary switching area covering Ernakulam and Idukki districts and Lakshadweep islands—in the current fiscal.

To augment cell phone coverage, it will also commission 79 2G and 372 3G towers. “Right now, BSNL has 14.57 lakh cell phone connections under Ernakulam SSA, principal general manager G. Muraleedharan said here on Saturday.

The Ernakulam SSA added 2.2 lakh new connections in the last fiscal, he said. On the company’s footprint in the State, Mr. Muraleedharan said BSNL at present has 70 lakh mobile connections across Kerala.

Last year, 1.76 lakh cell phone users in Ernakulam region ported into BSNL from private cellular service providers.

During the current financial year, BSNL Ernakulam would provide 32,000 new landline connections, 53,000 broadband connections, 7,500 wimax connections and 4,000 FTTH (fibre-to-the-home) connections, he said. “To increase coverage of 2G and 3 G services, BSNL had commissioned 52 2G and 45 3G towers in the network.”

With a view to strengthening broadband use in rural areas, village broadband kiosks have been opened under a central scheme at Kalady, Kolenchery, Mulanthuruthy, Njarakkal, Nettur, Kattappana, Nedumkandom, Murikkassery, Kumily and Peerumedu besides Agathi, Kiltan and Kadmath in Lakshadweep where internet services are offered at the rate of Rs 5 per hour, Mr. Muraleedharan added.

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