Tamil Nadu

Lack of coordination switches off more than 1000 landlines in Vellore

BSNL workers engaged in restoration of cables damaged during the digging of a trench by the TWAD Board for the water supply scheme at the junction of Anna Salai and Muthanna Nagar in Vellore on Wednesday.— Photo: C. Venkatachalapathy

BSNL workers engaged in restoration of cables damaged during the digging of a trench by the TWAD Board for the water supply scheme at the junction of Anna Salai and Muthanna Nagar in Vellore on Wednesday.— Photo: C. Venkatachalapathy  

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TWAD Board contract workers damage BSNL cables while digging a trench

The partial disruption of telecommunication service in Vellore on account of the damage caused to the BSNL cables by the contract workers, engaged in the digging of a trench for laying main pipelines for the Combined Water Supply Scheme (CWSS) on Anna Salai in Krishna Nagar, has exposed the lack of coordination among the various government bodies which have to dig roads for providing services.

The contract workers dug the trench for the CWSS envisaging bringing water from the Cauvery River near Mettur on behalf of the Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage (TWAD) Board. The trench was dug for laying a pipeline to connect the existing overhead tank of the Vellore Corporation in Sankaranpalayam so that Cauvery water could be pumped to the tank which supplies water to several wards.

According to a BSNL official, about 1,200 telephone lines have gone out of order in the Thorappadi and Krishna Nagar areas for the last nearly 15 days on account of the damage caused to the cables. “We were not informed about the digging of the trench,” said a BSNL official.

A telephone subscriber said that this problem would not have arisen if the TWAD Board had informed the BSNL about the plan of digging the trench and ensured that the BSNL field staff and officials were present to identify the location of the BSNL cables.

Another BSNL official said that coordination meetings of government bodies and departments such as the BSNL, the State Highways Department, National Highways and the TWAD Board which are involved in the digging of roads are held periodically. But the coordination did not percolate to the field level, he said.

A BSNL official said that the work of restoring the cables has been hampered by the flooding of the trench with drainage water.

“Several telephone lines have been restored and we are working on a war footing to restore the remaining lines,” he said.

K.A. Sankarasivam, president and Gowtham Singhee, Treasurer of the Vellore Citizens Welfare Forum, said that the district administration should take serious note of the issue and ensure that there was better coordination among the various departments in order to avoid damage to public infrastructure and disruption of vital services such as telecommunication and water supply in future. A coordination meeting should have been held between the TWAD Board and the BSNL officials before undertaking the work, said Mr. Sankarasivam. Middle level officials of the concerned departments should have been present while digging the trench, said Mr. Singhee.

The executive engineer of the TWAD Board was not available for his comment when this Correspondent tried to contact him.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 10:30:28 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/lack-of-coordination-switches-off-more-than-1000-landlines-in-vellore/article7817040.ece

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