The national telecom policy and its implementation: Part 4
Vinod Anand | 06 Dec 2011

Number of Public Telephone Operators (PTOs) in any given area.

The DOT or its successor company would be the incumbent company. In view of the complexity of interconnections and the need to get quick resolution and get started, it was suggested that we should have duopoly (as in the UK) for five years at least or until the second licensee gets 10 to 15% of the total volume of business (measured primarily by the number of DELs), whichever is more. During this duopoly period, we may prescribe the teledensities to be attained year after year, default of which would invite penalties including cancellation of the license. We can have a review after 5 years whether duo-poly would be persisted or leave the number of PTOs to the market.

The area of franchise / license:

A state is the logical unit. Only in respect of the North-East and North-West we may group the States as follows:

NE: Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal, Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripura, Manipur, Sikkim.

NW: Himachal, Punjab, Haryana, J&K.

Goa should be treated as part of Maharashtra, Pondicherry as part of Tamilnadu (Yanam as part of AP; Mahe as part of Kerala) Diu and Daman should be part of Gujarat & Andamans as part of Tamilnadu. MTNL maybe confined to Delhi. Bombay, Calcutta and Madras and must be treated as parts of their parent states of Maharashtra, West Bengal and Tamilnadu.

If for any political reasons or to appear that we are not excluding medium-sized Indian companies or those we want a number of small Indian Companies, then we may split up bigger or richer states into regions as follows:

Andhra Pradesh: Coastal, Rayalaseema & Telangana.
Madhya Pradesh: Madhya Bharat, Mahakoshal, Chatteesgarh
Uttar Pradesh: East and West
Rest of the states should not be regionalized.