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Fire at Airtel data centre in Mumbai hit network services

Mumbai, Dec 28 (): Customers of Bharti Airtel mobile network service across the city suffered from poor connectivity for several hours on Tuesday. Services were down since early morning on Tuesday. The network outage followed a fire at the telecom company’s data centre in Malad on Tuesday morning.

The fire broke out at about 2:30 am on the fourth floor of the seven-storey building, where the server room of the company is located. The blaze gutted the server room, damaging the entire electrical installation. There were no casualties.

“The Business Processing Outsourcing unit was functional and around 1,000 people were in the building at the time of fire, but we rescued them successfully,” said Chief Fire Officer H N Muzawar. The fire officials stated that evidence suggests short-circuit caused the fire.

Worst hit were data services offered by the company, particularly a large number of corporate customers from Mumbai. The problems varied from user to user. While some did not have any service at all, outgoing calls were barred for others, and none had operational data services till Tuesday evening.

Apart from voice calling service, data facilities like GPRS, 3G and CDMA were also hit. Services are also affected in adjoining areas, including Pune, according to people close to the development.

“A technical outage has affected our network in the western region, resulting in disruption of some services. We are working toward rectifying the outage at the earliest. We deeply regret the inconvenience caused to our customers,” an Airtel spokesperson told.

The company said it had restored the mobile voice, BlackBerry and SMS services.

“We are working to restore 2G and 3G data services later tonight. However, the restoration work is in progress for the enterprise services like leased lines and Internet services. These services are likely to be restored in the next 24 hours,” a company spokesman said.

Flooded with complaints, Airtel apologised to customers on Twitter.