Oct 10, 07:08 PM
Transparent allocation of airwaves and free roaming services are the main highlights of the New Draft Telecom Policy. The Communications Minister Kapil Sibal unveiled the policy in New Delhi today. Strategies to increase rural reach, higher broadband speeds and more funding options for operators and a new law on spectrum allocation and usage are some other highlights of the policy. The new draft policy, which was uploaded on the official website by Communications Minister Kapil Sibal, seeks to de-link allocation of licence to service providers from the award of radio waves. This will pave the way for acquiring the air waves through competitive bidding or by sharing it with existing firms. Mr. Sibal also said that, after receiving inputs from stakeholders and people at large, the final policy will be unveiled by December. He said, the policy is designed to transform socio-economic scenario through accelerated, equitable and inclusive economic growth. He also said that this can be achieved by laying emphasis on providing affordable, quality services in rural and remote areas.
Our correspondent adds that thrust areas include increasing rural tele-density from 35 percent to 100 percent by 2020, ensuring broadband on demand, 600 million connections by 2020 and grant of one nation-wide licence , mobile number portability across the country and better quality services.
Other highlights include enactment of a new spectrum act to address allocation issues, infrastructure status to telecom for better financial options, a new company to help fund telecom projects, appropriate policy for firms wishing to exit telecom business,and a new fund to promote domestic research and manufacturing.
The minister also made it clear that while pursuing the new policy, the focus will be clearly on the development agenda and not on the money that can accrue to the exchequer and to make India a hub of value added services.
Source: All India Radio