After writing to minister Kapil Sibal to return their third-generation spectrum licence fees if intra-circle roaming pacts are to be now considered illegal, top telecom operators have sent a joint letter to the Prime Minister with the same demand.
Much against the wishes of the GSM mobile operators the Department of Telecom's internal committee has accepted the formula suggested by the telecom regulator for pricing 2G spectrum.
In order to accord adequate time for wider consultation, the date for receipt of feedback on the draft New Telecom Policy has been extended to 9 December.
The Communication and IT Ministry on 30 October, 2011 allocated at least five new frequency bands, including the 700 Mhz band, for telecom services. Small chunks of spectrum for developing indigenous technologies have also been reserved under the National Frequency Allocation Plan (NFAP) 2011. The new Plan, which gives the broad direction for future spectrum allocation, will come into effect from October 1. The Plan looks forward to earmark the entire 700 Mhz band for mobile broadband services. The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had also set its sight on this band for Mobile TV services but NFAP has pushed the broadcasting services to another band.
In response to the letter of the TRAI seeking information from the mobile operators regarding 3G agreements, Vodafone and Bharti Airtel have told that 3G roaming agreements between players were legal and approved by the Department of Telecom before the spectrum auctions were held.
In a move to strengthen measures to prevent pesky messages and calls, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) plans to impose a termination charge of five paisa for every commercial SMS on service providers from where the messages originate. This means the operators will have to pay a minimum interconnect usage charge of five paisa per commercial SMS to the other.
As a measure to prevent violation of licence terms and conditions, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has sought information from leading service providers on their bilateral agreements for entering third generation (3G) roaming pacts.
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) chairman J S Sarma on 7th September, 2011 warned the mobile operators against increasing rates at will. He said that the regulator would have to "intervene" to protect the interest of consumers.
India's apex policy-making body in the sector, the Telecom Commission has directed the department of telecom ( DoT) to prepare an exit policy for operators. Several players combating the dual threats of market viability and licence cancellation following the 2G spectrum scam will be benefitted by this step.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has announced more time to the stakeholders, who were asked to give suggestions for a consultation paper on "Mobile Value Added Services (MVAS)" on 21 July 2011. The last date for receipt of comments has been extended to 23 August and for counter comments to 30 August.
India's top telecom firm Bharti Airtel is streamlining its operations in India and South Asia under two verticals to boost efficiency. The world's fifth largest telecom company, grappling with falling profits and slowing growth, will now operate under two customer business units — one serving corporate clients (business to business or B2B) and the other handling its retail offerings (business to customer or B2C) — effective August 1, the company said in a statement.
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is considering sweeping changes in the country's proposed new telecom policy. The department is planning a complete overhaul of the archaic Indian Telegraph Act. Under the new telecom policy, DoT also wants to replace the rollout obligation clause for broadband operators with a new incentive scheme. Other key proposals include re-farming of spectrum with operators for 3G and 4G and setting up of a telecom security council to oversee and audit all issues in this area.
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Chairman J S Sarma told the Joint Parliamentary Committee inquiring into the 2G Spectrum scam about its methodology and process for arriving at recommendations on allocation of 2G spectrum.
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