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Cellular operators seek laying of aerial optical fibre cables

The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has written to the Haryana Government, requesting permission for laying aerial optical fibre cables on electricity poles and other utility structures.

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The COAI has pointed out that if Haryana wanted to become a digitally advanced state, it will need three times more optical fibre cables.

In a letter to Chief Secretary Vijai Vardhan, the COAI said high-speed broadband offered a unique opportunity to bridge the rural-urban digital divide. Augmenting high-speed broadband capacities through the faster deployment of optical fibre cable was an immediate need of the telecom sector.\

Citing the Odisha Government’s policy, the COAI said apart from Odisha, several states like Bihar, Uttarakhand, MP, Chhattisgarh, HP and Punjab had allowed the right of way (RoW) rules for using electricity poles for the installation of aerial fibres.

The COAI has requested the state government to issue directions to power distribution companies to allow telecom service providers the use of existing electricity poles to carry optical fibre cable/aerial cabling at the rate prescribed rates under the rules.

The COAI letter said augmenting high-speed broadband capacities through faster deployment of optical fibre cables was vital to carry huge data traffic of mobile networks, considering that during the Covid pandemic, the extensive use of the telecommunication facilities had accelerated work-from-home practices. Tribune India

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