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Telecom Commission clears net neutrality rules, new policy | Latest India News | Onmanorama

Telecom Commission clears net neutrality rules, new policy | Latest India News | Onmanorama

Under the Indian-specific laws, the Times reports that mobile operators, internet providers, and social-media and internet companies can not engage in, or seek, preferential treatment.

The Telecom Commission (TC), the highest regulatory body in the Department of Telecom in India, on July 11 accepted the recommendations of the Telecom Regulation Authority of India (TRAI) made eight months ago.

"The Telecom Commission (TC) today approved net neutrality as recommended by TRAI expect some critical services will be kept out of its purview", Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan was quoted by PTI as saying. These include remote surgery or autonomous vehicles, which Sundarajan compared to laws allowing ambulances to ignore traffic rules.

TRAI had issued its recommendations on net neutrality in India in November 2017 asserting that there should be no intrusion of equal internet access to everyone, based on just the content. TRAI, in its recommendations, has duly noted that internet is an open platform and as such internet services must be non-discriminatory. In the paper Trai stresses on the importance of a broader understanding of net neutrality among authorities and seeks to bring transparency in the way people access internet services. This clause has been put in because these services often need to prioritise some things and situations over others. For most material on the internet, anyway. "If their Internet habits do not change dramatically, the increase of low-priced unlimited data plan subscribers would have a very limited impact on the overall service quality experienced by all users", the commission said.




Indias' Minister of the Department of Telecommunications, Shri Manoj Sinha. "We have urged the government to review industry practices with respect to traffic prioritisation to foster 5G-enabled applications and eco-system in India", said Mr Rajan S Mathews, director-general, COAI. "It would also not restrict adoption of reasonable traffic management practices by the service provider".

Last year, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had chose to roll back its rules on Net neutrality adopted in 2015 which require internet service providers to treat all content travelling through their pipes equally. The decision that came in June in the United States paves the way for service providers to slow down or block particular content for users. The government ultimately blocked the "Free Basics" program in early 2016, on the grounds that it violated net neutrality.

MediaNama's Aroon Deep discussing the new Net Neutrality policies. This "multi-provider, inter-operable, collaborative model increases the overall innovation in the system, dismantles monopolies and encourages passing of benefits to end user", the telecom regulator has said.


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