Mobile connectivity and internet speed still slow in Uttarakhand mountains.

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Mobile connectivity and internet speed still slow in Uttarakhand mountains.

Prem Upadhaya

Bageshwar, March 14

In this age of information and technology, connectivity has an important role to play.  “The whole world is in my fist” has become a saying (jumla) for the people staying in the remote mountainous region of Kumoan division of Uttarakhand where internet and mobile phone connectivity remains a problem.

The Union government and the private companies have failed to maintain connectivity due to topography and heterogeneous geographical structure of Uttarakhand. The private mobile telephone companies install their towers and network infrastructure according to their own priorities of profit making.  At many places  the signals are poor and students, youth struggling for employment, employees, businessmen, all are deprived of vast opportunities that connectivity with the virtual world provides.

The Pithoragarh, Champawat districts of Kumaon division, situated on the borders of China and Nepal respectively and important from strategic point of view, are thw worst sufferers as far as the mobile and internet connectivity is concerned. The situation cannot be said to be satisfactory.

Similarly, in the valleys like Bageshwar, Thal, Ghat, Seraghat, Kapkot  and urban areas like Berinag, Almora, Champawat,Rai-Agar, the signals remain poor.

It is worth mentioning that all the private companies and BSNL are allegedly extorting money from the people in the name of connectivity. The telephone service providers are providing speed of 2G but showing it as 4G. The government seems to have stopped looking at this problem. Many times people in these areas have protested but to no avail.

The common man do not have much options and forced to pay for dismal internet services. The people who need to connect online for variety of services like Aadhar card, Ration card, Golden card, Pan card, Labour card, Driving license, Registration, Fee and bill submission, filling up of the application forms of various competitions, knowing the results, Pension scheme, scholarship of social welfare schemes, ticket booking, banking services, Kisan Samman Nidhs, Direct benefit transfer into accounts, etc. are suffering due to lack of proper connectivity.

Rajesh Joshi, who runs Ddevbhumi  Jan Sewa Kendra  in the city itself, says that when the connectivity is good, then there is work throughout the day, otherwise one has to sit idle. “This makes it difficult to run the household expenses,” he added.

Chanda Tanganiya, a third-semester student of B.Sc., said  that when she comes home from college and searches for her topic in the net, it takes hours to open one page.

Online traders are also frustrated with the connectivity issue.They believe that If connectivity improves ,it could help people start self-employment and help trade, industry including tourism.

The dream of Digital India will be fulfilled only when the government thinks seriously on these issues and increases the infrastructure ,accessibility,connectivity and evaluates it from time to time for betterment of the service.

” The BSNL has also started 4G service to increase connectivity. But due to less revenue, there are no plans to increase infrastructure in future,” said Anand Kholia, SDO, Bageshwar.


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