60% mobile towers in Amphan-hit areas affected
Telcos expressed fear that if the electricity is not restored within next 10-12 hours, then backup system will fail completely
Mobile telecom services have been badly disrupted in the Amphan-hit southern region of the country as about 60 percent network towers were affected.
The cyclonic storm caused around 13,000 network towers of the region to be cut off the power supply.
According to an assessment by the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators Bangladesh (AMTOB), 50 to 60 percent of mobile sites in Khulna, Barishal, Chattogram, Sylhet, Dhaka, Mymensingh, Rangpur, and Rajshahi had been badly affected by the cyclone Amphan that raged the country's coastal districts on Wednesday night.
Mobile operators said the functional network towers are also facing power shortage due to lack of electricity supply.
As of 11am on Thursday, about 30 percent of the towers or 13,000 sites did not have electricity supply from the national grid, according to the AMTOB.
"The extremely severe cyclone Amphan has left a heavy toll on the country's telecom network infrastructure. It badly disrupted the telecom services in the districts of the southern regions," AMTOB Secretary General S M Farhad said.
"Initially, the mobile operators used the backup battery to keep the mobile towers functional. Once the battery energy was exhausted, the operators now switched to the generators to continue service amidst this adverse situation," he said.
Meanwhile, employees working for mobile service providers and their partner organizations in various places are facing difficulties in moving around the country due to heightened security measures put in place by law enforcement agencies.
"Kind cooperation from the authorities concerned would be crucial to restore the telecom infrastructure, which has become vital for the country under the ongoing coronavirus pandemic situation," Farhad added.