Cyclone FANI has been claimed to be the strongest tropical cyclone to hit the shores of India in 20 years. On Friday, the cyclone hit the Indian subcontinent through Orissa and wreaked havoc in the cities, uprooting trees and even claiming lives. Now the cyclone is headed towards West Bengal today and has been said to slowly immaterialise as it goes further into the land. However, owing to the awareness of the people in disaster management much of the losses that could have been caused otherwise have already been mitigated. The telecom operators are putting their efforts to ensure smooth connectivity during the time of this disaster. Reliance Jio and Airtel, both have announced their initiatives for cyclone FANI.
Reliance Jio Ensures Captive Power Sources and Relief in Affected Areas
Reliance Jio has said that it will counter downtime due to power outages in the areas affected by cyclone. The telco has claimed that its towers or network nodes will remain online facilitating communication through its multiway redundancy methodology. The telco has also stacked its captive power sources with diesel or fuel for any unseen eventuality.
The company’s Reliance Foundation, has also been working with the disaster management authorities for setting up preventive measures for the cyclone and also for setting up support in at-risk areas in coastal cities. The telco also said that it has used its digital services to spread critical information about the approach of the cyclone to far off areas. Until now the Reliance Foundation helpline has also solved 2,000 queries which it received during the time.
The telco also noted that it has been regularly sending cyclone updates and alerts to about 2.5 lakh fisherfolks and farmers in the cyclone path districts of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, West Bengal and Odisha since April 27, 2019. As part of this dissemination, Reliance Jio sent out calls, WhatsApp messages, JioChat messages, local cable TV scroll and print media.
Further, Reliance Foundation has also been involved in the disaster Preparedness and Coordination Meeting. The staff also assisted the authorities in evacuating people from low lying areas to temporary camps
Bharti Airtel Set Up War Rooms and Deployed Manpower
Another major telecom operator, Bharti Airtel has also announced its efforts during the perilous times. The Sunil Bharti Mittal led telco has set up war rooms with dedicated teams in the state/circle offices to monitor the impact of operations and coordinate quick recovery. The telco has added that these war rooms will be coordinating with Government Authorities such as NDMA. Airtel will also be ensuring advanced fuel filling at all sites to ensure connectivity and maximum network uptime. For affected areas, Airtel has deployed workforce for network operations, equipment, fuel and vehicles. The telco has also made SMS free in three affected states for five days. Emergency Intra Circle Roaming is being opened with other operators.