Telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday asserted the government’s stand on non-discriminatory access to internet saying the issue of net neutrality is being debated by Trai and its report is awaited, following which a final view will be taken.
“The issue of net neutrality is being debated by the Trai (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) and we have to await the Trai report. Thereafter, the government will take its structured view,” Prasad told reporters in Mumbai.
Amid a raging debate on providing equal internet access to all, the government had last year set up an expert panel to look into the issues of net neutrality.
Net neutrality implies that equal treatment be accorded to all internet traffic and no priority be given to an entity or company based on payment to content or service providers, such as telecom companies, which is seen as discriminatory.
“I have told the Parliament that internet is the finest creation of human mind. It must remain as a privilege and not become monopoly of the rich.
“Also, non-discriminatory access of Internet shall be given,” he said.
Noting that a detailed report is being awaited from Trai, Prasad said decisions would be based on fair consultations with all concerned stakeholders.
“We (the government) respect the freedom of social media and have larger commitment to non-discriminatory access,” he added.