DEHRADUN: The Uttarakhand government on Monday purchased 33 new satellite phones worth Rs 30 lakh to communicate better across hilly areas, especially during natural calamities.
Earlier, the Disaster Mitigation and Management Centre (DMMC) in Dehradun had sent a proposal to the state finance department to clear the procurement proposal.
At present, the state has 14 satellite phones that are being used by officials posted in the districts.
The finance department told TOI that the latest purchase is the biggest order ever placed and the hi-tech phones would be handed over to the district-level disaster management and mitigation units.
Explaining the significance of the satellite phones, executive director of DMMC, Piyush Rautela, said, “In hills, especially across international borders, satellite phones come handy as the device will cut down response time in case of a disaster, when phone lines get snapped.”
The new satellite phones have been purchased at Rs 90,000 each from the state-run BSNL in Delhi. “The trials in hilly terrain had proved that the range and quality of the phones is very good,” he added.