NEW DELHI: All radio waves will be awarded through auction and will be delinked from licences, unlike the existing policy wherein spectrum comes bundled with the licences.
Under the new Telecom Policy approved by the Union Cabinet yesterday, there is proposal for liberalisation of spectrum, under which the telecommunication service providers will be allowed to offer any technology and service.
The Policy is also an effort by the Government to overcome the negative publicity it received following the 2G spectrum scam and reports of a potential revenue loss of Rs 1.76 trillion to the exchequer by not auctioning the radio bandwidth.
The Policy had been placed before the Cabinet a week earlier but could not be taken up as Information and Broadcasting Ministry Ambika Soni felt that with spectrum going to the Information Technology Ministry, the issue of licences to radio and television may also be affected. There were fears that broadcasting may come under the jurisdiction of the IT Ministry, sources said.
Repositioning of the Mobile phone as an instrument of empowerment; "`Broadband For All" at a minimum download speed of 2 Mbps; convergence of Network, Services and Devices; and liberalisation of Spectrum are some of the salient points of the National Telecom Policy and Unified Licensing Regime for 2012.
The Policy effectively replaces the NTP of 1999 as it marks various departures from the existing policy.