Modi's Vision for the Indian Telecom industry

Narendra Modi talks to Dataquest exclusively about his vision for the Indian telecom industry

DQW Bureau
17 Jan 2014

The IT sector has become the shining beacon of Brand India globally. However, the telecom industry has been mired and stuck in policy issues for the last two years, and it is the second largest taxpayer to the government after income tax from the citizens.


PM candidate Narendra Modi reveals to Dataquest the policy changes he recommends for the telecom industry. "Yes, it is unfortunate that such a vibrant sector and a sector that has the potential to touch millions has been mismanaged by the UPA government with opaque policies and corruption. We are deeply concerned about the rural tele-density across India. It still remains around 40% as compared to around 145% in urban areas. There is an urgent need to take the project of National Optic Fibre Network (NOFN) to its logical conclusion. I am committed to bridging the urban-rural digital divide at the earliest."

Modi adds that we need to consistently augment mobile and broadband connectivity to be able to provide services to the citizens effectively. Handheld devices like mobile phones, tablets etc. need to be better deployed to fulfill the aspirations of the masses. We need to be a lot faster on taking the Internet to every doorstep and this calls for a time-bound programme to expand internet and broadband connectivity both in urban and rural areas.

Modi believes in abolishing roaming charges and thereby realizing the vision of ‘One Number, One Nation'. He also expresses his want to see hardware manufacturing clusters and parks across India and upgrade localized infrastructure to support local manufacturing of large volume Telecom Equipment and devices with focus on research.

"On the regulation side, we need a healthy regulatory framework within the telecom industry that is rational on the question of new entrants into existing markets and is also sensitive to consumer's interests. The telecom growth in India will have to come from competitiveness in areas such as innovation and better customer service. The ultimate aim of the telecom policy should be to realize the vision of faster, cheaper and reliable access to all Indians," Modi adds.