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Centre Introduces Draft Telecom Bill To Regulate Internet-based Services

The government through the new bill seeks to consolidate the Indian Telegraph Act 1885, the Wireless Telegraphy Act, 1933 and the Telegraph Wires (Unlawful Possession) Act, 1950

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The Department of Telecommunications has announced a new draft bill to replace the existing legal framework of telecommunications in India.

“The existing regulatory framework for the telecommunication sector is based on the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885. The nature of telecommunication, its usage and technologies have undergone a massive change since the era of the “telegraph”. The world stopped using “telegraph” in 2013,” as per the official statement. 

It said the world is now in the era of new technologies such as 4G and 5G, the internet of things, Industry 4.0, M2M communications and mobile edge computing.

With 117 crore subscribers, India is the world’s second-largest telecommunication ecosystem.

The telecommunication sector employs more than 4 million people and contributes about 8 per cent of the country’s GDP, the statement added. 

The Ministry of Communications initiated a public consultative process to develop a modern and future-ready legal framework. The consultation paper explained the existing legal framework and issues associated with it and highlighted the evolution of telecommunication regulation in other countries.

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