Dhiraagu has said its internet customers could face “degraded service” for the next few days as work is undertaken to repair a damaged submarine cable between the Maldives and Sri Lanka.
Dhiraagu spokesperson Imjad Jaleel said that “diversity routes” were
now being used by the company to ensure that locally hosted web
services could be accessed today, as it aims to prioritise the
provision of web browsing and e-mail services to customers.
“There should be no problems for locally hosted sites right now,”
Jaleel claimed. “We are looking to make use of diversity routes that
will allow us to prioritise important services such as e-mail and
browsing services for our customers even on sites based
Degraded services started occurring on Wednesday evening. Some business
organisations have expressed concerns that interrupted services were
already having a detrimental impact on local businesses such as those in the
tourism sector that rely on online bookings.
Dhiraagu is one of the country’s largest internet service providers,
dominating the internet and telecommunications sector. Dhiraagu’s main
competitor Wataniya has said it does not currently have any issues with the
provision of its internet services.
According to Dhiraagu, the problem with its internet service has arisen due
to damage sustained on a section of international submarine cable
located 26 kilometres off the coast of Sri Lanka. The cable is used by
the company to provide broadband services to the country.
Jaleel said the damaged area of cable had been located and a
regionally-based specialised vessel called the Asean Explorer was now
on its way to the affected area to conduct repairs. The vessel is
expected to arrive in the next 24 to 48 hours.
“This has impacted our customers’ access to the internet, it is
estimated that normal services will return in three to four days,”
Jaleel said. “The cable is located 40 metres below the water and this
is the first time that damage like this has taken place on our
Jaleel said the company would not know the exact cause of the damage
to the cable until the Asian Explorer vessel began repairs. However,
he said the damage may been caused by a vessel anchoring in shallow
“We would like to assure customers that we are presently seeking out
diversity routes and that everyone should be able to access locally
hosted web sites,” he said. “The Asian Explorer vessel that is on its
way now is designed specially to deal with repairs like this.”
Speaking to Minivan News today, the Maldives National Chamber of
Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) Vice President Ismail Asif claimed that
it had received several concerns regarding the impact of internet
connectivity issues on local business.
Asif claimed that the chamber had not received information from Dhiraagu as
yet on the issues affecting local internet service, adding that the
organisaton has itself been experiencing problems with its e-mail.
“We are still awaiting information right now from our members on the
scale of the impact, but almost everything we do relies on e-mails,
even letters we receive are scanned rather than faxed these days,” he
said. “Therefore, we expect there to be a huge impact on businesses.”
In terms of specific vulnerabilities to internet connections, the
MNCCI said that many of the country’s tourism related companies
significantly based their operations online.
“We cannot give the number of websites that are down right now
obviously as the internet situation is hindering our own work,” he