labels: telecom, telecom regulatory authority of india
FM turns down TRAI plea for independent fundingnews
Our Corporate Bureau
06 April 2005

New Delhi: Finance minister P Chidambaram has rejected the Telecom Regulatory Authority's request for an independent source of funds. Currently, the TRAI gets Rs10 crore from the government every year, barely enough to cover its costs.

In fact, 40 out of the 150 executive posts in the TRAI haven't been filled and the salaries are also very low. Accordingly, TRAI had proposed that a portion of the licence fees that the government gets from telecom companies be kept aside to fund it.

Experts say that it's of utmost importance that there be an independent telecom regulator especially since the government is itself operating in the telecom space through its state owned telecom companies BSNL and MTNL. They say that the regulator should not just be independent but should also be perceived to be independent.

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FM turns down TRAI plea for independent funding