July 27, 2005

 

Rains in Mumbai

The record rains have crippled the life in Mumbai for more than 24 hrs now. During such unprecedented natural calamity, the public transport coming to halt is understandable. Power shut down is also reasonable to avoid any major accident. At such times, one of the major thing you desperately want to work is communication network. But, when most of the cellular services went silent (excuse the pun), there was near panic situation. Landlines were, of course, dead.

And cellular services didn't go down due to a sudden spike in volume, as it happens on new year eve, where you get blatantly false and recorded message "The call cannot be completed due to congestion in other network". There was absolutely no network signal available indicating the base station (the tower-like thingie) being conked off. After 24 hrs, the situation remains the same. Isn't it supposed to work 24x7? I think, all the major service providers owe an answer (and an apology, for the case given below) to the subscribers. In all the operators, Reliance was the only one which was working with almost zero downtime.

A more disturbing thing is service provider(s) offering you the location of nearest coffee shop. Imagine your car being stuck in 2-feet-deep water and the first thing you care about, is the nearest and hippest coffee shop! Anybody who thought of sending such SMSes is a shameless moron. As they say on slashdot, these are such insensitive clods.

During such crisis, the real help comes from so-called aam aadmi. Last night, while on my way home, I saw few people standing at the beginning of a 200 mts patch which had knee deep water. They, standing in that incessant rain, were instructing everybody to form a group of 2/3, hold each other and walk in the middle of the road as the water was running with quite a force. Kudos to the spirit of Mumbai!

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