The telecommunications systems are now up and running in most parts of Jammu and Kashmir. Intra-circle roaming (ICR) agreements are now in place which allow subscribers from different operators to use any available cellular network for making calls, sending SMS, and using the internet data. As per government directives telecom operators are also offering free talktime to their subscribers in the flood-hit J&K.
The official status of the major telecom service providers in flood-hit J&K:
Aircel was the first operator to let the users of other operators for using its network for free. After many days of restoration, Aircel 2G is now functional in Anantnag, Kulgam, Bandipora, Shopian, Pulwama, Srinagar, Budgam, Bonigam, and Ganderbal.
Aircel has close about 2.1 million active subscribers in J&K which will now be very happy to finally have the connectivity back on their cell phones.
A BSNL official revealed that the PSU telco has 934 BTS (Base Transceiver Stations) working out of its 1,173 towers in the state. Thus, BSNL has restored connectivity to almost 80% of the regions in the valley. It has also successfully brought 15 mobile towers and one landline exchange located in South Kashmir to fully operational state.
Vodafone in a statement said that it has now become one of the top telecom operators providing maximum coverage in the valley. It now offers a total of 700 cell sites, including those under ICR for providing coverage to its subscribers in the valley.
RCom’s mobile towers are now operational in the badly hit areas including those in the South Kashmir. It now provides access to cellular services via 200 mobile towers including 80 of its own.
Airtel authorities said that it is working day-and-night for restoring connectivity across the flood-hit state.
We believe the telecom systems in the Jammu and Kashmir should be fully functional by the next week. The state has suffered too much financial loss and lost many lives in these floods, and we urge you to please make a contribution to the Prime Minister National Relief Fund.