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Telecom an essential service, says Bharti Airtel CEO Gopal Vittal

Telecom is an essential service and therefore, there is a greater responsibility on connectivity providers to do what it takes to make sure everything works seamlessly at this time of stress, said Bharti Airtel CEO Gopal Vittal.

In a letter to enterprise and individual (post-paid) customers of Bharti Airtel, Mr. Vittal said, “Over the last few days, we have all been inundated with what is happening all around the world on COVID-19. Clearly, there is a lot that we don’t know and the uncertainty weighs on all of us.’’

Terming telecom an essential service, he said, “We at Airtel provide an essential service, keeping our customers and the country connected. We are doing everything we can to keep our employees, partners and families safe and connected.’’

To improve the overall Internet experience on these days of heavy traffic, he said, the company had taken various steps, including accelerating roll-outs, upgrading quality of service wherever possible and advancing investments to meet additional bandwidth requirements.

"We understand that your network needs would evolve during this difficult time, as you work from home. We have taken several measures to improve your experience.’’

He encouraged all customers to use digital channels to recharge mobile, wi-fi or TV services and avoid store visits.

In terms of operational redundancy, Mr. Vittal said Bharti Airtel has built a full-fledged contingency plan to deal with any event, including, if it comes to it, quarantining any of its critical network operating centres, call centres, etc.

“We have also reviewed contingency plans of all our partners, our managed service providers, tower companies, equipment providers, call centres and software providers to ensure that we are all coordinated and operate as a single unit,’’ he further said in the letter.

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Printable version | Apr 5, 2020 7:36:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/telecom-an-essential-service-says-bharti-airtel-ceo-gopal-vittal/article31176256.ece

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