Kulman Ghising, the managing director of the National Electricity Body, stated that the authority had revoked its plan to disconnect internet lines due to the hardships it has caused to the general public. According to Ghising, “we will not let go of the internet service providers who have been delaying in paying their outstanding debts to the National Education Association.”
In the midst of the ongoing dispute between the National Electrical Authority (NEA) and internet service providers (ISPs), the state-owned power utility began disconnecting internet transmission lines from electricity poles around the country on Saturday. The National Electricity Administration (NEA) has been criticising Internet service providers (ISPs) for failing to pay the leasing fees for using utility poles.
According to the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources, and Irrigation, a high-level panel, which included representatives from the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, changed the rate of rental costs in December 2019. The ISPs have been refusing to pay their debts for the past two years, claiming that the rental prices have been unduly increased.
In the opinion of NEA authorities, the dues of Internet service providers (ISPs) and cable television operators amount to approximately Rs 2 billion. “It is absolutely unjust that Internet service providers (ISPs) charge their consumers additional costs for rental charges while refusing to pay the NEA the money they have collected,” Ghising remarked.
ISPs have instead threatened to raise the internet service rate by Rs 150-300 per subscriber if the National Electricity Authority (NEA) proceeds with its plan to collect unpaid rental costs by force.