India to speed up installing mobile towers at airports

India to speed up installing mobile towers at airports

The Government of India has issued guidelines to immediately address the issues related to the installation of mobile phone towers in and nearby airports.

Senior Deputy Chief Wireless Adviser at the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), LD Meghwal has written to the Director-General of the Airport Authority of India (AAI) and the Joint Communications and Electronic Personnel (JCES) Director, stating that if applications seek approval from the AAI and JCES not taken care of within 30 days of submission will be considered cleared.

The letter was also forwarded to the chief secretaries of states and union territories which currently have similar pending approvals, said a report in the Economic Times. A copy of the letter was also sent to the secretary at the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

According to the letter, the clearance shall have the following condition: “The physical construction of the tower shall not be commenced before the 16th day of the issuance of clearance.”

The telecom reforms package that was rolled out on September 15 seeks to simplify the Standing Advisory Committee on Radio Frequency Allocations (SACFA) clearance process for installing towers through measures such as self-declaration-based, automated time-bound approvals of SACFA cases, including integration of AAI and JCES systems with SaralSanchar Portal of DoT.

According to the report, Meghwal also mentioned that the AAI had added a total of 121 non-licensed state-government controlled airports in 2015 to the protection list which has now been reduced to 97 airports. However, the authority hasn’t been able to efficiently manage the pending cases with these airports. It is to be known that the airports on the protection list are spread across 23 states and union territories (UTs) in India.

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