India names Rahul Khullar next chairman of TRAI
India has named Rahul Khullar the next
chairman of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, a government official
Khullar, currently the federal trade secretary, will succeed J.S. Sarma, who
retired Sunday, the official told Dow Jones Newswires, asking not to be
identified. Khullar's appointment will be for three years and the order is
Khullar wasn't immediately available for comment.
Khullar would be the first non-telecom
bureaucrat to lead the telecom regulatory body in the past decade. His
appointment comes at a time when the telecom industry--once the beacon of the
country's economic growth--has lost its sheen because of corruption allegations
and regulatory uncertainty.
A former minister, who had overseen the allotment of telecom licenses and
bandwidth in 2008, is in jail facing trial for the alleged irregularities,
including selling bandwidth at low rates.
The Supreme Court of India has since ordered the cancellation of the 122
telecom licenses given in 2008 and ordered fresh auctions by Aug. 31.
Khullar's challenges in his new role include clearing the regulatory obstacles
in the sector.
The regulator has already come under criticism from the industry for its
proposals of a starting auction price which is several times higher than what
operators pay now. Industry players have also criticized a proposal to take
back bandwidth and allot spectrum in some other band, saying they would have to
write off at least INR1.2 trillion ($22.4 billion) for the transition.
Источник: Total Telecom
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