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Non-issue like net neutrality gets OK, zilch on telco costs

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13.07.2018

The telecom sector continues to haemorrhage, but instead of trying to fix this by lowering government levies on the sector or injecting much-needed rationality into spectrum pricing, the Telecom Commission—the country’s highest decision-making body in telecom—has decided to endorse the Trai’s view on net neutrality that, while very high-profile, is of much lesser importance. Indeed, going by the economic affairs secretary’s interview the other day, the government seems to have no plans to meaningfully lower these levies anytime soon. While activists projected net neutrality as a burning issue for the sector, and both the government and the regulator bought into this, it was never clear what problem it was trying to solve. Even now, after Trai has come out with its recommendations that, for instance, ban a Free Basics, it has not spelled out how this hurts anyone.

Both Trai and senior ministers have argued that India doesn’t want “walled........

© The Financial Express