Because of the ongoing dispute between the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) and internet service providers (ISPs), internet users have once again been inconvenienced. Starting on Saturday, the state-owned power utility began removing internet transmission cables from electricity poles across the country.
The National Electricity Authority (NEA) and Internet service providers (ISPs) have been at odds since the authority stated that it will raise the leasing prices for utility poles that are used by ISPs. While the National Electricity Authority (NEA) has blamed the Internet service providers (ISPs) for failing to pay the fees for the use of utility poles, the ISPs have criticised the power utility’s decision to raise the rental prices as unjust.
In this regard, internet service providers (ISPs) have knocked on the doors of the Nepal Telecommunications Authority, requesting that internet fees be increased by Rs 150 to Rs 300 per subscriber. The National Environmental Assessment Agency, on the other hand, is aggressively removing the wires and cables that carry internet and cable TV services, which have been recognised as vital services.
According to NEA officials, the authority has removed a number of internet and cable TV wires and cables from its poles in a number of locations, including Biratnagar, Janakpur, Pokhara, Butwal, Surkhet, and Dhangadhi. “We have taken action exclusively against those ISP firms who did not comply with the deadline of Friday and did not communicate with the NEA offices,” a source with knowledge of the situation stated.
Following the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus in the country, many industries, including education, banking, large industries, and health, among others, have come to rely on internet platforms to conduct their operations. The administration has also announced its intention to digitise the economy by expanding access to internet services throughout the country.
Because of the rift that has developed between the two service providers, Energy Minister Pampha Bhusal has reaffirmed her commitment to resolving the issue as soon as possible so that it does not adversely affect the interests of internet customers. However, no significant progress has been made in this area thus far.