BSNL’s rusted dish antenna crashes on house

G. Bhagyam (58) was washing utensils in the backyard of her house at Mayisamy Chettiyar Colony on Pondanur-Chettipalayam road when she thought her house was struck by lighting and thunder.

With a loud noise, something heavy came crashing on the premises around 8.30 a.m. on Monday.

It was a large rust-eaten dish antenna that came off a tall BSNL mobile phone tower in the adjacent compound.

“My heart pounds whenever I recall the incident. The antenna fell on the compound wall in the backyard and some parts on the terrace,” she said.

The woman, her 59-year-old husband K. Ganesan and their five-year-old grandson live in the house, and this is third time that some part of the tower has fallen into their house.

“Aheavy metal part had fallen from the tower three months ago. Though we visited the BSNL office attached to the tower and complained, no action was taken. The Podanur police were also informed about the incident,” said Ms. Bhagyam, accusing BSNL of not properly maintaining the tower.

“We live in constant fear. My grandson plays all over the compound,” she said.

Though the BSNL office is located close to the house, no official had visited the place and assessed the condition till Tuesday evening, said Mr. Ganesan.

When contacted, a senior official of the BSNL in Coimbatore said the telephone tower was functional, but the antenna that fell on the house on Monday was defunct.

Compensation

“The antenna came off the tower due to strong winds. The antenna was not functioning for a long time and it was supposed to be removed.

Compensation will be awarded to the family after assessing the damages,” said the official.

However, the official could not say whether efforts would be made to remove such defunct parts from the tower to avoid a disaster.

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