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Call-drop situation improving with operators told to shape up: Prasad

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source: timesofindia.com
source: timesofindia.com

By NewsGram Staff Writer

Patna: Ravi Shankar Prasad, Communications and Information Technology Minister asserted on Sunday that telecom operators have been told to shape up on the issue of the growing problem of call drops and that the situation was improving.

“There is a problem about call drops, but the situation is improving,” Prasad told reporters here.

“All the telecom operators have been told to take steps to improve quality of services,” he said, adding that the department of telecommunications (DoT) had reviewed the situation on weekly basis for the past two months.

“DoT Secretary Rakesh Garg has spoken to the owners of the service providers at the highest level,” the minister said.

He said shortage of towers was the main problem for call drops and that a policy decision had been taken under which all buildings of government of India must allow installation of towers.

Under this policy, post offices too were directed to allow towers on rent at their buildings throughout the country, Prasad said.

Prasad also wrote letters to the chief ministers for installation of towers atop government buildings.

Earlier this month, Prasad, referring to telecom operators citing shutting down mobile towers due to radiation fears as well as lack of spectrum as major reasons for call drops, said the diverse complaints could not be linked together.

“The complaint against call drops and that against tower radiation cannot go together,” Prasad said answering questions at an event in Delhi organised by the Ficci-supported International Chamber of Commerce.

Telecom operators said that about 7,000 to 10,000 tower sites were locked or shut down across major urban centres and urged a national policy for installation of mobile towers.

The minister had a stern word for telecom operators on the issue of infrastructure and asked them to deliver “good services”.

“Spectrum has been given (with clearing of spectrum sharing and trading). Don’t now give the impression that you only want to collect customers and give no thought to good services,” he said.

“Operators should optimise their network, synchronise the network and also invest in the network,” he added.

(With inputs from IANS)

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“Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella Discussed on Data Sovereignty, Digital India”, Says Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad

Data sovereignty and localisation have been a matter of concern and major technology companies which are mostly based out of India and store data outside the country

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Ravi Shankar prasad
"We talked on issue of data sovereignty which is a work in progress," Prasad said, adding that Digital India was also discussed among several issues in the IT segment. Wikimedia Commons

 Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on Wednesday discussed on a range of issues including data sovereignty and Digital India with Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Speaking to reporters here after his meeting with Nadella, IT Minister Prasad said that it was a courtesy meeting which went “very good”.

“We talked on issue of data sovereignty which is a work in progress,” he said, adding that Digital India was also discussed among several issues in the IT segment.

Data sovereignty and data localisation have been major subjects of debate with the government having introduced the Personal Data Protection Bill in the Parliament last year.

Although the bill allows the transfer of personal data outside India, while transferring “sensitive” personal data outside the country a copy will have to be kept in the country. Data processing or collecting entities will, however, be barred from transferring “critical” personal data outside the country.

Satya Nadella
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on Wednesday discussed on a range of issues including data sovereignty and Digital India with Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. Wikimedia Commons

Data sovereignty and localisation have been a matter of concern and major technology companies which are mostly based out of India and store data outside the country.

The minister also told the media that he has offered the Microsoft Corporation CEO to adopt few villages in the country and transform them into digital villages in line with the government’s target of establishing one lakh digital villages.

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“We discussed a whole range of issues on IT, particularly i have offered to him… We have to establish one lakh digital villages. He can consider adopting some of these digital villages and mentoring it to become a beacon for others to follow,” he said. (IANS)