Kathmandu, Nepal – Internet services were restored on Thursday evening after a disruption that lasted approximately 6.5 hours. The outage, which coincided with the National Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Day, affected several major Internet Service Providers (ISPs), including Worldlink Communications, Vianet, and Subisu.

Vianet and Subisu, alongside Worldlink, reassured their customers that connectivity had been re-established and thanked them for their patience during the outage.

Prior to these updates, the ISPs had informed their customers about the initial disruption. Worldlink Communications had posted: “Dear Valued Customer, We regret to inform you that our upstream provider has disconnected our international links citing non-payment. We are unable to remit such payments as we have not obtained permission from the Nepal government for foreign exchange. We are doing our best to recover the service. Please bear with us and accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused. We will post an update with timelines once available.”

Interestingly, state-run Nepal Telecom was not affected by this disruption and seized the moment to remind customers of their reliable service offerings. During the outage, they posted on Facebook: “Are you experiencing internet disruptions? Nepal Telecom is always ready to address your internet needs and provide secure and dependable service. Use our internet confidently through various services: for fiber net including TV dial 198, for attractive mobile data deals dial *1415#, and for 4G Wi-Fi try Namaste Wi-Fi service. Nepal Telecom, the nation’s communication backbone.”

The cause of the disruption was traced to financial disputes over unpaid dues amounting to over 3 billion rupees ($22.5 million) with Airtel, the Indian upstream provider. The regulatory challenges, particularly the inability to secure foreign exchange permissions from the government, have been cited as significant hurdles in resolving these payments.

With internet services now back online, the ISPs are focusing on negotiations with government bodies to streamline regulatory processes and ensure stable internet access in the future.

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