CWG clean-up: No overhead cable in Delhi

NEW DELHI: No overhead cable in Delhi. That is what the government is working towards ahead of the Commonwealth Games.

The Delhi Municipal Corporation, under pressure to beautify the city for the Commonwealth Games, has asked the cable operators to remove their cables/wires from electricity poles.

An undated notice issued by the Advertising Department of the Corporation says "cable operators functioning in the territorial limits of the Corporation, while operating their networks, unauthorisedly and illegally tie the cables with street light poles as well as hanging over-head" and this not only "looks very shabby but is dangerous to life and spoil the aesthetic beauty of the city."
The Corporation has, thus, requested cable operators to "remove/make alternate arrangement of their cables from the street light poles as well as those hanging overhead within one month."

The Corporation has threatened that if this is not done, suitable action will be taken by MCD including removal of such cables at the risk and expenses of the cable operators.

Interestingly, the Delhi High Court had way back in 1997 directed the city authorities to find a way to give ‘right of way’ to cable operators.

The electricity authorities had also considered charging cable operators for right of way by taking monthly fee, but no agreement could be reached. 
Later in July 2007, the Secretary in the Power Ministry had convened a meeting which had discussed the issue with cable operators. An inter-ministerial committee was set up on 5 March 2008 for rationalising the charges for right of way for the operators and held its first and so far only meeting on 11 June 2008.

Members comprise representatives of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, the Ministries of Urban Development, Rural Development, Communication and Information Technology, state governments, and MSO Alliance.

"Cable operators are removing the overhead cable and going underground. The government has been cooperative and this is a project undertaken for the betterment of the city," says Cable Operators Federation of India president Roop Sharma.

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