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NEA Warns to Cut Power Supply for ISPs over Poles Charges

Nepal Electricity Authority NEA has warned that it will cut the power supply for ISPs if they failed to pay their pole bills. The latest announcement is likely to rekindle the tussle between NEA and the ISPs over the rental charges of utility poles.

NEA has warned that ISPs that won’t agree to the terms and pay their rental charges will have their power supply cut off. The authority says some internet providers have agreed on utility pole charges for some areas only while others have not penned agreements.

And it has issued a fresh warning of halting the electricity supply. NEA says the ISPs (Internet Service Providers) can expect a halt for a power supply at any time.

Previously, the electricity authority had started cutting off fiber cables of ISPs after the latter failed to pay for rental charges of utility poles. The action drew condemnation and the authority halted the action after a multilateral meeting with stakeholders.

ISPs have been using utility poles to spread their fiber broadband to their customers.

NEA argues the ISPs have been paying little to no amount and the price hike is fair. ISPs have been disputing NEA’s decision ever since. But the conflict is unlikely to settle as both the entities remain adamant about their positions.

NEA Warns ISPs Again

In its notice, NEA has called upon the ISPs to “contact the regional office of NEA by the end of Baisakh”. It demands the service providers “make an agreement, renew and clear their due on rental charges.”

Likewise, the notice states that ISP shan’t expand their fiber cables through the utility poles till a new agreement. Citing frequent notice for the service providers, NEA says it would start cutting off power supply at any time. The ISPs will have only themselves to blame for the consequent situations, NEA warned.

Last year in October, NEA begin cutting fiber cables on utility poles when ISPs refused to pay rental charges. The situation softened following a working committee formation to solve the row between NEA, MOCIT, NTA, and ISPs.

Also read: NTC Finds More Fiber Net Customers Amid NEA and ISPs Dispute

Will it hike internet costs?

This acrimony between NEA and ISP has divided the public and the government. Some state the ISPs have been unruly for not complying with NEA’s increased rental charges on utility poles. ISPs, on their own, have argued the new terms by NEA are unfair and unreasonable.

ISPAN Chief has warned that ISPs would need to hike internet costs to balance it out if forced to comply with NEA’s rental charges on utility poles.   

With the latest warning by NEA to ISPs, the hostility between the two is likely to resurface again. Who do you think is to blame, and should it affect internet consumers at last? Do leave your valuable inputs in the comments below.

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