Bangladesh on Tuesday launched an investigation after the country’s Internet link was sabotaged, disrupting communications nationwide for 15 hours. This disruption deprives the BTTB of revenue of 70,000 US dollars per hour.
Internet and overseas telephone call services had been disrupted for 15 hours from early Tuesday as the telephone board’s Dhaka-Chittagong–Cox’s Bazar fibre-optic link with the submarine cable was snapped at two points near Cox’s Bazar and Feni.
Since installation of Submarine cable in 2006, this is the 22nd case of disruption and second in same week.
The cable was snapped at Sitakunda, 42km off Chittagong at 1:36am and at Joaria, 19km off Cox’s Bazar, at 5:30am, said Ziaur Rashid Safdar, security and surveillance general manager of the Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board.
According to a BTTB document, the cable has been cut for 22 times since its inauguration on May 21, 2006.
The document said seven of such incidents were acts of sabotage. In eight cases, the cut resulted from works by other agencies. Only two incidents of cable cut resulted from theft.
There is practically no resale value of this optical fibre cable. There is no copper or iron in it. Then why would anyone dig up the earth deep in the night to steal 140 metres of cable?" asks a BTTB official.
The optical fibre line connects Dhaka to the Cox’s Bazar’s submarine cable’s landing station and connect Bangladesh to the Information Superhighway. It serves as the backbone of international communication, while satellite services act as backup with limited bandwidth.