Saturday July 20, 2024

An unpleasant clutter of wires

By Ibne Ahmad
June 22, 2024
Representational image of entangled electric cables in a Karachi area. — APP/File
Representational image of entangled electric cables in a Karachi area. — APP/File

On a sunny evening, I walked up to Fazal Town from Shah Khalid Colony Railway Bridge. Along the pavement, I repeatedly stumbled over dangerously lying cable wires in Butt Market.

“After almost getting my neck caught in one such cable, I started taking photographs of the cityscape. It was cluttered with multiple fibre optic cables belonging to competing cable companies, ruining the city’s aesthetic appeal,” says Jafar Abbas.

“I saw fibre optic cables in the middle of the street obstructing cars, motorcycles, and walkers. The cable wires can be seen snaking along the road waiting for an accident to happen. This particular road has a continuous cable that runs along it for some distance, and the road is usually quite busy,” says Arham Ali.

“Exposed fibre optic cables, both overhead and on the ground are potential safety hazards for residents and a reflection of poor execution of work by cable companies. These are especially dangerous during monsoons as cables can cause serious accidents like choking and falls,” says Azadar Hussain.

“Yesterday, I saw a lamp post choked by cables. A complete mess of wires blocking storefronts of commercial outlets, obscuring their name boards. The view of the sky was marred for everyone in the neighbourhood,” says Qalb-e-Haider.

“This tangle has existed due to the mushrooming of fibre and other telecom infrastructure providers. The mess causes problems for the cable line owners themselves, such as fibre optic operators, because they cannot fathom where their cable wires branch off amidst the mix-up. Frequently, fixing the cables in one place causes problems somewhere else,” says Arif Hussain.

“In places, the cables are either an obstruction, a stumbling threat on the ground, or at such a low level that a person’s neck can get entangled, especially at night,” says Qasim Ali.

“Overhead cables an issue across Rawalpindi.