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Violation of norms on commercial communication led to 32,032 disconnections

Telecom operators disconnected 15,382 and 32,032 connections during 2021 and 2022, respectively over violation of regulations, meant to curb Unsolicited Commercial Communication or pesky marketing calls and messages, Parliament was informed on Friday.

Till date, TRAI has imposed financial disincentives of Rs 34.9 crore on the access service providers for failing to curb unsolicited commercial communications in their networks from Registered Telemarketers, Telecom Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued Telecom Commercial Communication Customer Preference Regulation – 2018 to curb the Unsolicited Commercial Communication (UCC).

”The Access Service Providers have disconnected 15,382 and 32,032 connections during the calendar year – 2021 and 2022, respectively for violating TCCCPR-2018,” Vaishnaw said.

To another question in Rajya Sabha on domestic production of telecom equipments, Minister of State for Communications, Devusinh Chauhan, informed that for including design-led manufacturing under PLI, the scheme guideline was amended in June 2022, effective since April 1, 2022.

”42 companies have been approved under PLI Scheme which includes 17 design-led manufacturing companies. As on 31.01.2023, sales of Rs 20,446 crore have been reported under PLI scheme,” Chauhan said.

To a separate question in Rajya Sabha, on whether 5G technology increases the risk of hacking due to lack of encryption during the connection process, making such devices easy targets for cyber-attacks, Chauhan replied in negative.

”No sir, adequate encryption is available in 5G during the connection process,” he said.

Also, as per the license conditions, the licensee is completely responsible for the security of its network, Chauhan added.

To another question on the assets of the state-owned telecom corporations, Chauhan informed the total assets value of BSNL and MTNL stood at Rs 1,26,395 crore and Rs 12,303.64 crore, respectively, as on March 31, 2022. The area of land owned by BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd) and MTNL (Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd) is about 10,568 acres and 334.36 acres, respectively.

”BSNL sold one land of area 1.48 acres to Directorate General of Lighthouses and Lightships in Goa. Further, BSNL has leased out two properties that is a land of area 0.56 acres in Patna to Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) and a land of area 24.29 acres at Gopalpur, West Bengal to Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL). MTNL has not sold or leased out any property till date,” Chauhan said. PTI

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