BSNL has claimed Rs. 40 lakh as compensation from Chennai Corporation for “extensive damages to long distance fibre optic cables” in Nungambakkam. BSNL has also requested the Chennai Corporation to advise contractors to “inform date and time of civic works on every stretch” to avoid similar disruption to telecommunication in the city.

However, Chennai Corporation has rejected the demand of BSNL as the Chennai Corporation had informed BSNL of civic infrastructure works in advance.

Admitting that the Chennai Corporation’s claim of having informed BSNL in advance “may be right,” BSNL officials said they “could have prevented the indirect loss of revenue had the damage to cables been informed immediately by the Chennai Corporation.”

BSNL officials observed that a private operator’s cables were restored immediately leading them to believe that the other operator had been intimated well in advance by the civic body.

BSNL’s internet and international call traffic in the central parts of the city took a hit on April 5 due to extensive damage to its optic fibre cables (OFCs). The damage was caused during infrastructure development work on Sterling Road by the Chennai Corporation. The long-distance fibre cable providing connectivity to Andhra and Karnataka was among those severely affected, causing disruption in the STD traffic between Chennai and these places.

A 1,200-pair copper cable and an 800-pair copper cable were also cut, disrupting telephone services in and around Chetpet, Sait Colony and Haddows Road.

The damage to the OFCs under the Southern Telecom Region that links the main exchange at Haddows Road resulted in a breakdown of the Chetpet and Sait Colony remote exchanges.

The D-SLAM equipment on eight OFC lines were also damaged, resulting in disruption of broadband services to several exchanges in the central business district as well as exchanges like Kilpauk and Kellys. While the monetary loss is roughly estimated at Rs. 40 lakh, the loss of revenue due to the disruption of broadband and long-distance calls would run into a few lakhs, BSNL claimed

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