With telecom service providers and the government playing the blame game, the consumer doesn’t know who to turn to to get problems, likecall drops, redressed.
Service providers say the government has not released enough spectrum. If the spectrum is scarce, operators have to install more towers, said TV Ramachandran, executive director, Cellular Operators Association of India. “This... causes interference in frequency. As a result calls drop.”
Large numbers of service providers (up to 12 licence holders in a region) add to the problem, said Department of Telecommunications secretary Siddharth Behura. In all major markets of the world, there are three to four operators. Behura said they were coming out with a new spectrum policy.
There should be separate consumer courts for mobile phone subscribers, said Ravi Sharma, executive chairman, Communications and Manu-facturing Association of India.
Operators need to invest more in infrastructure. “They need to do their radio frequency planning again,” Sharma said, adding in some cases the equipment was old.
Sharing of spectrum can be a solution. “The government should make spectrum sharing between operators mandatory,” said KN Gupta, former executive director of C-DOT. “This means, if a band of spectrum is lying vacant, then call of other operators in the caseof congestion would automatically route through it.”