There’s unlikely to be any immediate respite from call drops, with the government and telcos continuing to be at loggerheads, and refusing to take responsibility for reducing the problem.
Operators had demanded a uniform national telecom tower policy which can be implementable across the country. But the government said on Monday that operators will have to work within the framework and increase investment in the latest technology to reduce call drops.
Earlier on Monday, cellular operators and tower companies in a media conference blamed the lack of government support and policy guidelines on telecom towers for call drops.
In an interesting twist at the conference on ‘dropped calls and cell sites,’ the organisers omitted ‘dropped calls’ from the background banner, after top operators refused to sit under the banner, in a likely indication that they will not own up any responsibility on call drops.
The operators instead stressed on the lack of tower sites and demanded more policy directives.
Later in the evening, the operators met telecom secretary Rakesh Garg to highlight the need for a policy to install telecom towers, release more spectrum and allow government buildings to be used for installing cell sites.
However, Garg rejected operators’ claim that call drops were linked to the lack of a national tower policy and said they would need to find a solution from within the existing norms.
“There is no linkage between call drops and tower policy. There was no policy earlier but call drops did not happen. The problem has arisen in the last seven months. They have to find a solution within the existing norms and improve the service and reduce call drops,” he said, adding “no serious efforts are being made to bring about a perceptible change”.