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HomeindiaGovt likely to table Telecommunications Bill 2023 in Lok Sabha tomorrow

Govt likely to table Telecommunications Bill 2023 in Lok Sabha tomorrow

New Delhi: The government is likely to table the Telecommunications Bill 2023 in Lok Sabha on Monday, according to sources.

The Telecommunications Bill 2023 aims to replace the 138 years old Indian Telegraph Act that governs the telecom sector.

“The President has been informed about the Telecommunications Bill 2023. It is likely to be introduced in Lok Sabha on Monday, December 18,” a source told PTI.

The Cabinet had cleared the bill in August.

The draft Telecommunications Bill released in 2023 had proposed to bring over-the-top or the internet based calling and messaging apps under the definition of telecommunications to enhance users’ safety.

The bill had also proposed to curb the power of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), on which industry players had raised concern.

According to government officials, the issues around over-the-top players and Trai were resolved before it was cleared by the Cabinet.

The draft had proposed to ease some of the rules like refund of fees for licence, registration etc. in case a company surrenders its permit.

The new bill proposes the government to be vested with the power to waive off entry fees, licence fee, penalty etc. in the interest of consumers, ensuring competition in the market, availability or continuity of telecom networks, and national security.

(Published 17 December 2023, 16:51 IST)

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