Internet access in India might take several days for full restoration

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New Delhi, Jan 31 : Internet links to India, Egypt and Gulf countries, disrupted due to a fault in an international undersea cable network on Wednesday, might take several days for full restoration.

According to Internet Service Providers' Association of India President Rajesh Chharia, a "degraded" Internet service was restored on Wednesday night, but full restoration will take 10 to 15 days.

In New Delhi, the day-to-day functioning of companies completely dependent on Internet was adversely affected.

AEZ, a company that deals with real estate and into the construction of malls and housing complexes, faced problems in answering queries of its customers.

"As Internet is down, we are cut off from all our offices, head office and other branches," said Vikas Jain, Assistant Vice President, Marketing and Sales, AEZ Group of companies.

The employees at AEZ complained that they lost connectivity with the NRIs and outstation customers.

"Actually there are a lot of problems due to the breakdown as we solve most of the queries of customers through the Internet," said Priyanka, an employee of AEZ.

However, the BPO industry in Hyderabad faced minimal disruption since these companies are not dependent on a single service provider and subscribe to many backups.

"We did not have a major impact. We had a momentary impact for probably half an hour. There is slowness. It is not that we are 100 per cent down," said Sridhar, Vice President, Knoah Solutions.

Videsh Sanchar Nigam Limited (VSNL), an Internet service provider, said its service had been largely restored by diverting to another cable.

Two outsourcing firms in Bangalore also complained of minimal problems.

Meanwhile, residents of Gulf countries also reported a slowdown in Internet connectivity. The Bahrain Telecommunications Co. said its services were affected after two undersea cables were cut near Alexandria, in Egypt.

Egypt's Telecom Ministry said it was not immediately possible to gauge the impact of the disruption on financial institutions. Seventy percent of the country's Internet network was down. It could take several days for its services to return to normal.

The capital city, Cairo, had no access to the Internet for the bulk of the day, frustrating businesses and various professions.

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