New Delhi: In an anti-climax, the Cabinet today did not take up approval of the much-anticipated National Telecom Policy that provides for abolition of roaming charges and allows users to retain the same number across the country.
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) withdrew the proposal seeking approval of NTP minutes before the Cabinet met this evening, sources said.
The reason for the sudden move could not be immediately ascertained.
The policy was to replace the 13-year old New Telecom Policy 1999 through which telecom sector is currently governed.
Under NTP 2012, it was proposed to de-link spectrum from licences, reduce number of different licences, give industry liberal mergers and acquisition norms and remove roaming charge burden for consumers.
In April, the DoT in its note sent to the Cabinet had sought approval for decision on certain issued relating to the introduction of Unified Licences regime, which is vital for telecom companies whose licences have been cancelled by Supreme Court on 2 February and new companies planning to make investments in India.
The DoT will start issuing new licences once the policy and Unified Licences are approved by the Cabinet.
After getting new licences, telecom companies will be able to run their services based on the infrastructure available with them, but for mobile telephony the companies will need spectrum to provide services.
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Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 08:38:29 IST