India Telecom Policy: TRAI sends revised draft document to DoT

Telecom Lead India: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India
(TRAI) has sent a revised draft document on National Telecom Policy 2012 to the
Department of Telecommunications (DoT) on March 2.


We have revised the draft document. We have not included
the TRIAD of policies in the NTP 2012 because it was felt that, along with the
preamble, it made a very long reading and detracted from the focus on NTP
itself,” said JS Sarma, chairman, TRAI, in his to letter to DoT.


TRAI has also expressed happiness since the telecom
department included several recommendation of the telecom regulator.


In the new draft, TRAI did not include activities and
targets as part of the policy since it was felt that these would be better
captured in an action plan that can be drawn up by the DoT separately. TRAI has
tried to capture most of the objectives and strategies, with certain


Highlight of the new draft document








I. Establish a ubiquitous, robust, reliable, secure,
affordable and efficient Converged telecommunication network capable of
providing high speed broadband and seamless converged communication services,
with special focus on rural and remote areas;


II. Reposition the telecommunication services as an
instrument of socio economic empowerment of citizens, both in the rural and
urban areas;


III. Achieve self-sufficiency in telecom equipment
manufacturing through promotion of Research and Development (R&D) and
indigenous production;


IV. Strengthen institutional framework to meet the
requirements of growth of the sector;


V. Attract investments in telecom sector.




Establish a ubiquitous, robust, reliable, secure,
affordable and efficient Converged telecommunication network capable of
providing high speed broadband and seamless converged communication services,
with special focus on rural and remote areas.


Objective IA: Licensing framework


To establish an appropriate licensing framework for
facilitating converged network and services, facilitating easy movement of
customers across networks.



I.A.1. Move towards Unified Licence regime enabling offer
of converged services;


I.A.2. Create a path for existing licensees to migrate to
the Unified Licence Regime;


I.A.3. Promote economies of scale in the telecom sector,
while maintaining adequate competition, through appropriate M & A policy to
be evolved from time to time on consideration
of TRAI recommendations;


I.A.4. Move eventually towards achieving One Nation – One
License by providing for full Mobile Number Portability and removal of roaming
charges, decision on both of which will be taken by TRAI;


I.A.5. TRAI to consider minimising inter
operator costs in fixing tariff so as to facilitate affordability of tariff to
the consumers.


Objective IB: Convergent Networks


To facilitate the speedy establishment of converged



I.B.1. Orient, review and harmonize the existing
licensing framework in a time bound manner to enable seamless delivery of
converged services;


I.B.2. To enable and enforce the VOIP facility including
mandating interconnection between ISP and access providers, so as to enhance
affordability to the consumers;


I.B.3. Migrate towards Internet Protocol IPv6 in a phased
and time bound manner by 2017;


I.B.4. Encourage new and innovative IPv6 based
applications in different sectors of the economy by enabling participatory
approach of all stake holders;


I.B.5. Facilitate and encourage the establishment of Next
Generation Networks.


Objective IC: Spectrum Management


To ensure efficient and optimal use of available



I.C.1. Ensure adequate availability of globally
harmonized spectrum including through Audit and refarming;


I.C.2. Make available additional 500 MHz spectrum for
telecommunications services by the year 2017 and another 300 MHz by 2020;


I.C.3. Ensure availability of adequate spectrum to meet
current and future demand for microwave access/backhaul, in appropriate
frequency bands;


I.C.4. Move existing users of spectrum i.e. Government
departments, public sector, private sector and telecom service providers to
alternate frequency bands or media, so as to make spectrum available for
commercial telecom services;


I.C.5. Delink spectrum from license in respect of all
future licences;


I.C.6. Allocate spectrum to holders of Unified Licence,
based on recommendations of TRAI, in a transparent manner through market
related processes, keeping in view the objectives of efficiency revenue and


I.C.7. TRAI to conduct periodic Audit of
spectrum utilization to ensure its efficient use and to issue necessary
Regulations / Directions from time to time;


I.C.8. De-license additional frequency bands for public
use and operation of low power devices;


I.C.9. Promote use of unlicensed band and white spaces
without causing harmful interference to the licensed applications;


I.C.10. TRAI to evolve guidelines to deal with
all issues connected with wireless (spectrum) licences and their terms and
conditions including re-farming/ withdrawal of allotted spectrum, spectrum
pricing, cancellation or revocation of spectrum licence, exemptions on use of
spectrum, spectrum sharing, spectrum trading etc;


I.C.11. Permit spectrum pooling, sharing and later,
trading for optimal utilization of spectrum based on recommendations
of TRAI;


I.C.12. Introduce Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO)
in the country;


I.C.13. Actively encourage establishment and use of
landlines based on optical fiber network and cable networks, so as to promote
Fixed-Mobile Convergence.


Objective ID: Broadband


To recognize broadband as a basic necessity and to
provide ubiquitous and efficient networks capable of increasingly higher speeds
so as to eventually move towards a level where Broadband can be a Right for all



I.D.1. Provide reliable and affordable broadband access
in the country including in rural and remote areas by appropriate combination
of optical fiber, wireless and other technologies;


I.D.2. TRAI to periodically fix the minimum
broadband download speeds of broadband;


I.D.3. To facilitate availability of broadband
progressively at speeds higher than the laid down minimum;


I.D.4. Optical fibre network to be laid by an independent
agency, initially up to the village Panchayat level and to be extended
progressively in a time bound manner, to all villages and habitations having a
population of more than 500 persons. Access to this Optical Fiber Network will
be open, nondiscriminatory and technology neutral;


I.D.5. Incorporate enabling provisions in the current
regulatory framework in order to facilitate utilization of existing
infrastructure including cable TV networks for extending high quality broadband
services including in rural areas;


I.D.6. Develop an eco-system for broadband in close
coordination with all stakeholders, including Ministries/ Government
Departments/ Agencies;


I.D.7. Ensure that all servers on which sensitive data
are hosted are located

within the country;


I.D.8. Ensure that all local content is hosted on servers
located within the country;


I.D.9. Rationalize the duties levied on inputs and
finished products and provide requisites incentives to ensure affordability of
Customer premises equipment including modem;


I.D.10. Provide appropriate Tax benefits to Telecom
infrastructure provider companies;


I.D.11. Formulate appropriate policies in the area of
enterprise and data services to fuel further growth of India’s ICTE sector.


Objective IE: Cloud Services


To setup an efficient cloud computing environment.



I.E.1. Adopt best practices to address the issues related
to cloud services;


I.E.2. Create a secure network for cloud computing
covering encryption and privacy;


I.E.3. Create a legal and security frame work covering
network security, law enforcement assistance and preservation of cross-border
data flows for deployment of Cloud Services;


I.E.4. TRAI to devise appropriate mechanisms to
provide interoperability among cloud computing service providers.


Objective IF: deployment of telecom infrastructure


To facilitate deployment of telecom infrastructure in a
cost effective and timely manner.



I.F.1. Declare telecom infrastructure to be an essential
infrastructure and provide requisite tax benefits;


I.F.2. Bring the telecom Infrastructure providers under
unified Licensing regime;


I.F.3. Authorize the unified license holders the Right of
way to install the telecom Infrastructure;


I.F.4. Prescribe, in consultation with ministry of Urban
development, uniform road reinstatement charges across the country;


I.F.5. Review and simplify the policy for Right of Way
for telecom infrastructure;


I.F.6. Coordinate with State Governments and Local bodies
to enable the growth of telecom infrastructure;


I.F.7. Coordinate with State Governments to ensure
efficient power supply to tower based and other telecom equipments in rural
areas on priority basis;


I.F.8. Do away with the requirement of land conversion
for setting up of telecom towers in rural areas;


I.F.9. TRAI to mandate standards for all types
of towers used in telecommunications;


I.F.10. Promote sharing of both passive and active
infrastructure, based on the recommendations of TRAI;


I.F.11. Introduce Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO)
in the country, based on recommendations of TRAI;


I.F.12. Create end to end IPv6 test beds for testing IPv6
networks and



Objective IG: Rural Telephony and Universal Service


To obliterate the digital divide between the rural and
urban areas;




I.G.1. Impose rural roll out obligations in all licenses
where spectrum is being provided such that all Habitations with a population of
500 persons and above are covered by the service providers;


I.G.2. To enforce rural rollout obligations through
appropriate disincentives against non-performance of the obligations and
appropriate incentives for performance;


I.G.3. Make Use of the USOF component of the licence fee
and spectrum charges to provide appropriate incentives and disincentives;


I.G.4. Ensure quick and time bound roll out of the Optic
Fiber network in all Habitations with a population of 500 persons and above;


I.G.5. Ensure, through coordination with Ministry of I
& B, time bound digitisation of the TV Cable industry in all the rural


I.G.6. Provide support from USO fund for provision of
converged communication services in villages / habitations with population of
less than 500;


I.G.7. Facilitate the setting up of VSAT in remote areas;


I.G.8. Endeavour to make available Global Mobile Personal
Communication by Satellite (GMPCS), compliant with security requirements, for
all remote areas.


Objective IH: Security


To ensure security of the information in the telecom
network and monitoring of the information, compliant with the objectives of
national security.



I.H.1. Keeping in view individual privacy and in line
with international practices, develop and deploy a state of the art system for
providing assistance to Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs);


I.H.2. Mandate and enforce that the Telecom Service
Providers take adequate measures to ensure the security of communication
in/through their networks by adopting contemporary information security


I.H.3. Create an institutional framework through
regulatory measures to ensure that safe-to-connect devices are inducted into
the Telecom Networks;


I.H.4. Build national capacity in all areas that impinge
on Telecom network security and communication assistance for law enforcement,
such as security standards, security testing, interception and monitoring
capabilities and manufacturing of critical telecom equipment;


I.H.5. Ensure that all equipments supplied to the telecom
service providers are in conformity with the laid down security and safety


I.H.6. Mandate, on consideration of recommendations
from TRAI, standards in the areas of functional requirements, safety and
security and in all possible building blocks of the communication network i.e.
devices, elements, components, physical infrastructure like towers, buildings


I.H.7. Develop a rational criterion for sharing of costs
beyond a threshold limit between Government and the service providers in
implementing security measures.


Objective IJ: Quality of Service


To ensure better quality of experience for telecom




I.J.1. Quality of Service and consumer interests being
under TRAI’s domain, TRAI will appropriately lay down the end-to-end
system performance standards, Quality of Service parameters, and measures to
Protect consumer interest; (covers all issues of QoS listed in the draft NTP)


I.J.2. TRAI to be given necessary powers
including the power to enforce including penalty provisions, to enforce the
observance by the service provides of the laid down standards /parameters;


I.J.3. Undertake legislative measures to bring disputes
between telecom consumers and service providers within the jurisdiction of
Consumer Forums established under Consumer Protection Act.


Objective IK: Emergency Response Services


To enable access to telecommunication services in times
of emergency and disasters.



I.K.1. Entrust TRAI, under clause 11 (1) (b)
of TRAI Act, with the development of nationwide Unified Emergency
Response Mechanism by providing nationwide single access number for emergency


I.K.2. To ensure availability of communication to
agencies connected with law and order, security and disaster management during
calamities and emergencies.


Objective IL: Environment and Health


Address health and environmental concerns related to the
telecom sector.



I.L.1. Strengthen the framework to address environmental
and health related concerns including e-waste management;


I.L.2. Encourage adoption of green policy by promoting
the use of energy efficient equipment, active infrastructure sharing,
incentivizing service providers deploying green technologies for the reduction
of carbon footprint in the telecom sector;


I.L.3. Facilitate increased use of alternative sources
(Renewable Energy Technologies) of energy for powering telecom networks;


I.L.4. Promote use of In-Building Solution (IBS) and
Distributed Antenna System (DAS) and its deployment in coordination with
Ministry of Urban Development by aligning the National Building Code as well as
embedding these critical requirements in the process of developmental planning
and finalization of master plans for rural and urban areas in consultation with the State Governments;


I.L.5. Promote mobile phones which do not contain
brominates and chlorinated compounds and antimony trioxide and ensure proper
disposal of telecom wastes in accordance with e-Waste Rules 2010;


I.L.6. Mandate testing and certification of all telecom
products for conformance, to health, safety, security, EMF/EMI/EMC standards;


I.L.7. Entrust TRAI under clause 11 (1) (b)
of TRAI Act with the function of developing and monitoring EMF



Reposition the telecommunication service as an instrument
of socio economic empowerment of citizens, both in the rural and urban areas.


Objective IIA: Development of e-applications


To facilitate the development of e-applications,
particularly in Education, Health, Agriculture, Skill development, Small and
Medium Enterprises, e-Governance, e-Commerce, e-banking.




II.A.1. Promote an ecosystem for participants in VAS
industry value chain to develop applications, particularly to meet the needs of
the rural citizens;


II.A.2. Incentivise companies involved largely with the
development of eapplications for rural areas and in regional languages;


II.A.3. Put in place an appropriate regulatory framework
for delivery of VAS at affordable price so as to fuel growth in
entrepreneurship, innovation and provision of region specific content in
regional languages;


II.A.4. Encourage development of mobile phones based on
open platform standards and leverage the mobile device for enabling secure
transactional services including online authentication of identity;


II.A.5. Work with handset manufacturers and international
standards bodies to make e-applications interoperable in Indian languages;


II.A.6. Incentivise application developers to provide
customized applications suitable for local needs;


Objective IIB: Enabling delivery of e-services to rural


To deliver e-services provided by various government
agencies to the citizens.



II.B.1. Promote synergies between roll-out of broadband
and various Government programs viz. e-governance, e-Panchayat, NMEICT, MNREGA,
NKN, AADHAR, AAKASH tablet etc.;


II.B.2. Digitize the content available in the government


II.B.3. Coordinate with State Governments and different
Ministries in Government of India such that all procedures are amended, to
ensure digital delivery of services, in a definite timeframe;


II.B.4. Coordinate with State Governments and different
Ministries in Government of India such that all personnel are trained in a
definite timeframe to achieve the desired degree of competence in understanding
of the revised procedures and delivery of services;


II.B.5. Equip all the Panchayats and Villages Centres
with the requisite Hardware and train the personnel;


II.B.6. Stimulate the demand for e- applications and services
by working closely with Department of IT in the promotion of local content
creation particularly in regional languages.


Objective IIC: Empowering urban citizens


To empower citizens in the Urban areas through
establishment of Fiber networks and deployment of applications required for
smart cities and towns.



II.C.1. Provide fiber to home/kerb as an integrated
access to meet ICT requirements of urban citizens;


II.C.2. Coordinate with the Ministry of Urban Development
to ensure that National Building Code is aligned to facilitate deployment of
fiber in the buildings as well as embedding the requirement of fiber in the
developmental planning and finalization of master plans for urban areas;


II.C.3. Make regulatory changes to unbundle fiber


II.C.4. Encourage Fiber to Home/Kerb (FTTH/FTTC) by
Infrastructure Providers (IPs) with enabling guidelines and policies;


II.C.5. Coordinate with State Governments and different
Ministries in Government of India such that all procedures for services in
urban areas are amended in a definite timeframe to ensure digital delivery of


II.C.6. Coordinate with State Governments and different
Ministries in Government of India such that all personnel are trained in a
definite timeframe to achieve the desired degree of competence in understanding
of the revised procedures and delivery of services;


II.C.7. Use Information and Communications Technologies
(ICT) for converting, as per a definite time program, the urban areas into
smart cities/ smart towns, by way of appropriate applications for managing all
urban services particularly road infrastructure, water and sewerage

management, electricity, security and transport systems;


II.C.8. Digitize the content and data available in the
government departments, in a definite timeframe;


II.C.9. Provide policy support including standards
implementation, for secure communication of information within and between
different sectors;


II.C.10. Develop a regulatory framework for Machine to
Machine communications;


II.C.11. Provide financial support for research and smart
infrastructure pilot projects in few major cities.




Achieve self-sufficiency in telecom equipment
manufacturing through promotion of Research and Development (R&D) and
indigenous production.


Objective IIIA: Innovation and IPR creation

To promote entrepreneurship, innovation and IPR creation
for indigenous product development and its commercialisation.



III.A.1. Develop detailed guidelines for promotion of
innovation and IPR creation;


III.A.2. Promote Indian products viz., products having
Indian IPR, by stipulating a mandatory market share;


III.A.3. Create a Telecom Research and Development
Corporation (TRDC) for setting up of an R&D fund and establishing a
Research and Development Park;


III.A.4. Establish a Telecom Research and Development
Park for facilitating research, IPR creation and commercialization;


III.A.5. Facilitate access to financial resources on
favorable terms and provide fiscal incentives to relevant R&D institutions;


III.A.6. Assist researchers to obtain IPRs for their


III.A.7. Set up an autonomous Telecommunications Standard
Development Organization (TSDO) to develop standards to meet national
requirements, to generate IPRs and to participate in international
standardization bodies to contribute in formulation of global standards;


III.A.8. Create suitable testing infrastructure to aid in
development of new products and services;


III.A.9. Encourage the entrepreneurs to develop and
commercialize Indian products by making available requisite funding
(pre-venture and venture capital), management and mentoring support.


Objective IIIB: Self reliance in telecom equipment

To achieve a high degree of self reliance in telecom
equipment manufacturing to meet the indigenous demands.




III.B.1. Develop detailed telecom equipment manufacturing
policy, providing, inter alia, for

* a minimum extent of 60 percent and 80 percent of
domestic manufacturing,

* a minimum value addition of 45 percent and 65

* Indian products (products with Indian IPR) at 35
percent and 50 percent by the year 2017 and 2020 respectively;


III.B.2. Set up a Telecom Equipment Manufacturing
Organisation (TEMO) to coordinate between manufacturers and service providers
for proper implementation of the telecom equipment manufacturing policy;


III.B.3. Create designing and manufacturing Clusters for
design, development and manufacture of telecommunication equipment;


III.B.4. Facilitate access to the financial resources on
favorable terms and fiscal incentives required by indigenous manufacturers of
telecom products and R&D institutions;


III.B.5. Facilitate provision of fiscal incentives
through a Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme (M-SIPS) to eliminate the
disability costs in manufacturing of telecom equipment on account of
infrastructure gaps relating to power, transportation etc. and to mitigate
relatively high cost of finance;


III.B.6. Restructure taxes and duties such that
indigenous manufacturers are not disadvantaged vis-à-vis imported products and
components and put in place a stable tax regime and provide income tax holiday
for 10 years to domestic telecom manufacturing;


III.B.7. Create a Telecom Manufacturing Fund (TMF) for
providing venture capital to indigenous manufacturing;


III.B.8. Set up a cutting edge technology fab facility
with government funding support in the form of equity, grants and soft loans;


III.B.9. Set up an International Standard Testing and
Certification Agency, by converting TEC into an autonomous agency, for carrying
out conformance testing, certification and to aid in development of new products
and services;


III.B.10. Provide preferential market access for
domestically manufactured telecommunication products to address strategic and
security concerns of the nation, consistent with international commitments;


III.B.11. Encourage the service providers to use Indian
and Indian manufactured products, through measures including appropriate


III.B.12. Leverage synergies among the various telecom
players (manufacturers, service providers and project integrators) to provide
integrated span style


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