The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Connection blues plague capital

Ranchi, Dec. 4: One can no longer depend on mobile phones to communicate with a friend or reach out to a relative in case of an emergency. For, instead of being greeted by the friend or relative on the other end of the line, one gets to hear a recorded voice harping that the person is “unreachable”.

And the excuses are plenty — “connection error”, “network busy”, “check the number you have called”, “the number you have called is out of reach”, “the number you have called cannot be reached” and so on. Thus, you keep trying at the expense of your patience and the charge of your mobile phone. But with little effect.

And the person whom you had promised to call back to pass on some information would be fuming at you for having forgotten to do just that. “It has become a social problem. An aggrieved friend or relative is reluctant to believe that you tried, but the call could not materialise because of poor connectivity,” complained Barun Roy, a mobile phone user.

“My friend and I stood just a metre or so away from each other and dialled the other’s number, and each time, was told ‘in a sweet voice’ that the number is out of range!” fumed Roy.

“At times, even the text messages are not delivered on time,” he added.

“A colleague had sent an SMS with a specific query on Monday. I received it on Tuesday noon,” said T. Biswas, an executive.

Rajesh Kumar Pandey, the nodal officer of Reliance Smart, admitted that there were some technical snags last Saturday and on Wednesday, too, for a brief duration. “Things have improved. But for technical details, we will get back to you,” said the nodal officer, looking after grievances of customers. But, as expected he did not get back.

A BSNL source explained the root cause of the problem. “Generally, one connection to a mobile service provider means that 1,500 to 1,600 mobile phones will operate through that channel. But, some service providers overload the connections. As a result, each connection has to handle more than double the capacity. That leads to congestion,” he said.

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