Telecom services have mechanisms to solve existing problems

BTRC public hearing held in Ctg

Published : 08 Dec 2022 07:44 PM

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) held a public hearing on Thursday morning at Hotel Radisson Blu Chattogram Bay View Hotel and online platform 'Zoom' on 'Telecommunication Services and Activities of Regulatory Bodies' as part of implementation of 'National Cleanliness Strategy Action Plan'.

Chairman of the Public Hearing Committee and BTRC Chairman (Senior Secretary) Shyam Sundar Sikder, Vice-Chairman of the Commission Engineer Md. Mohiuddin Ahmed gave a welcome speech at the public hearing.

He said that every public hearing increases the transparency and accountability of the work of any organization and BTRC will work on how much more development can be done in the telecommunication sector by taking into account the complaints of customers.

He said, till October 2022, the number of internet subscribers in the country is 12 crore 62 lakh, mobile SIM subscribers are 18 crore 16 lakh and the internet density is 104.17 percent and the bandwidth and data usage in November 2022 is 4,419 GBBS.

General Director of System and Services Department Br. J. Md. Nasim Parvez made a presentation regarding the public hearing.

He said, he brought up the significant progress report of the public hearing held in the past 2021.  He said that BTRC has taken various activities in the last 1 year to increase internet speed in view of customer complaints and drive test devices have been purchased to check internet speed.  New guidelines for call drop refunds have been introduced this year to address call drops and a provision of three times the cost of each call drop has been introduced. During the hearing, the customers highlighted the problems they faced in getting the telecommunication services and the officials of the concerned departments of the commission answered all the questions in a step by step manner.  848 people registered online to participate in the public hearing, out of which 182 participated in person, 94 online and 17 others participated.

A private employee named Jawadul Karim demanded not to keep the recharge limit of Tk 20.  In response, Brigadier General Md. Nasim Parvez, Director General of Systems and Services Department, said, mobile operators have analyzed and found that customers do not recharge more than 10 rupees.  After analyzing the matter again, if the customer responds to the recharge of Tk 10, then action will be taken accordingly.  In response to another customer's complaint about weak network and internet speed of mobile operators, Director General of Engineering and Operations Department Brigadier General Md. Ehsanul Kabir said that the network weaknesses of several towers of all operators have already been identified and the operators have been instructed to increase the network speed in those towers.  A student named Saim said that if a certain amount of money is recharged, data and bundles will be purchased automatically. Director General of Systems and Services Department, Brigadier General Md. Nasim Parvez assured to take special measures.

A student named Ashiq Chowdhury wants to know about the initiative to increase the job field by introducing new services in the telecommunication sector.  In response, Commissioner of Legal and Licensing Department, Abu Syed Dilzar Hossain said, new technologies and services are constantly being introduced in the world and the number of licensed institutions of BTRC is increasing due to the increase in job opportunities in this sector.  When IT expert Touhidul Alam Chowdhury asked about the activities of launching amateur radio license, the Director of Spectrum Division, Lt. Col. Awal Uddin Ahmed assured about the new activities of launching amateur radio license.

A student named Asiful complained about automatic pay for use when the data is exhausted.  In response, Brigadier General Md. Nasim Parvez, Director General of Systems and Services Department, said that considering the interests of the customers, Pay for Use has been limited to a maximum of five taka

Various categories of data packages have been introduced considering the capacity of the customer.  In response to a customer's question about the launch of 5G, Director General of Engineering and Operations Department Brigadier General Md. Ehsanul Kabir said that all operators have already started the process of launching 5G.  A person named Tanim Khan mentioned the issue of various security related problems including password of different accounts including bank account of old customer during SIM replacement.

Director General of Systems and Services Department Brigadier General Md. Nasim Parvez said SIM is a state asset.  Before the replacement, the customer is informed about this by newspaper notification and notice on the website.  If the customer does not respond after the specified time, it is treated as a replacement SIM.

BTRC Chairman Shyam Sundar Sikder said that the complaints received in the public hearing are helpful in the further activities and decision-making of BTRC.

He said that the future plans of the government and the election manifesto of the Hon'ble Prime Minister have been implemented.  BTRC is working towards the goal of building a Smart Bangladesh in 2041.  

He also said that public hearings will be organized in other departments in the future.  At the end of the public hearing, BTRC Chairman Shyam Sundar Sikder interacted with the media workers and answered their various questions.

Director of System and Services Department Lt. Col. SM Rezaur Rahman presided over the meeting.  High-ranking officials of various government agencies, representatives of telecommunication companies licensed by BTRC, in-person and online telecommunication service users participated in the public hearing on service quality of mobile operators such as call-drop and prices of various packages (voice, data bundles) and complaints regarding internet service, internet speed in remote areas.  In addition, issues related to the services of other telecom service provider licensees concerned were involved.  

The Commissioner of Spectrum Division Engineer Sheikh Riaz Ahmed, Director General of Administration Division Md. Delwar Hossain, local administration officials of Chattogram along with BTRC Development Officers were present in the event.