Dhaka, Nov 3 (bdnews24.com) – GrameenPhone’s coverage beyond Bangladesh’s boundary has forced the Indian government to deploy cellular mobile network in the neglected northeastern states, reports Kolkota-based The Telegraph Friday. The Indians along the Bangladesh border in Meghalaya and other north-eastern states “are forced to use prepaid cards of GrameenPhone, the largest cell phone service provider of Bangladesh, paying ISD call rates.” People without mobile phones cross the border and use Bangladeshi phone booths and they pay hefty amounts of international tariff to call own country, the report alleges. Villagers have complained to the Telegraph correspondent that the Indian government does not provide them basic telecoms facilities on the pretext of security.
This article shows that government’s instinct to ban cellphones from conflict zones because of the belief that it will be used by militants/terrorists to further their cause, actually neutralizes one of the security agencies most potent weapons to track subversives. I doubt that the Sri Lankan government will allow cellular service to be available any time soon in the North. But at least it gives the security agencies some food for thought. The Indian government was similarly reluctant to have cellular service in Kashmir, but the Indian security agencies are their biggest proponents now. ———— Troops in Kashmir master new weapon: cell phones Reuters By Sheikh MushtaqSun May 21, 1:53 AM ET Minutes after a bomb exploded recently in Kashmir and wounded Indian soldiers, a senior member of an Islamist rebel group called local newspaper offices to claim responsibility for the blast.