Unhappy with Facebook's reaction to Trai's consultation paper, PMO appoints high-powered panel

Since things have gotten out of hand in what appears to be a blame game, the Economic Times has reported that the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has stepped in as it is indeed displeased with the way in which Facebook is reacting to the situation.


With so much to and fro happening between TRAI and Facebook, it is easy to say that TRAI is standing firm on the net neutrality debate, which it made evidently clear in its consultation. Since things have gotten out of hand in what appears to be a blame game, the Economic Times has reported that the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has stepped in as it is indeed displeased with the way in which Facebook is reacting to the situation.

Not satisfied by the way things are going, the PMO has even appointed a high-powered panel to look into the matter. The committee is headed by Communications and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and comprises of Jitendra Singh, minister of state for PMO, and Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan.

The panel is expected to meet soon after the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) submits its recommendations on differential pricing, which is expected to happen soon. The same panel is expected to keep an eye on Facebook's upcoming steps in defending its Free Basics platform.

All major telecom players have been pushing for differential pricing plans for over-the-top (OTT) and services like Free Basics being pushed by Facebook and other zero rating schemes.

TRAI could also explore alternative methods to provide free internet access to users, according to an earlier report. The same also adds that TRAI is expected to release detailed net neutrality guidelines later this week.


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