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Trai chief RS Sharma, who threw Aadhaar challenge on Twitter, gets two-year extension

An all-out war had raged on Twitter after the RS Sharma shared his Aadhaar number publicly, challenging anyone to show how mere knowledge of the number can be misused to harm him.

india Updated: Aug 09, 2018 23:09 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
RS Sharma,Trai,Trai chief
RS Sharma has been appointed as the Trai chief till September 30, 2020.(File Photo)

Ram Sewak Sharma would head the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) for two more years. The Union cabinet’s appointments committee approved the extension of his term on Thursday.

“The appointments committee of the cabinet has approved the re-appointment of Shri Ram Sewak Sharma, IAS (Retd) as Chairperson, TRAI for a further period up to September 30, 2020, ie the date on which he attains the age of 65 years or until further orders, whichever is earlier,” said a circular.

Sharma has been TRAI chairman since July 2015.

The telecom sector saw major turmoil under his chairmanship when Reliance’s Jio entered the market, followed by the sector’s consolidation to just three players – Jio, Airtel, and the company formed from the merger of Vodafone and Idea.

He cut the interoperability fee, which an operator must pay to another when a call or a text message is sent to a different network. Jio appreciated this consumer-focused move, while older firms opposed it as it would negatively impact their revenue.

Sharma, a 1978-batch (retired) IAS officer of Jharkhand cadre, has been credited for playing a key role in implementing the Aadhaar project. He is a vocal defender of the 12-digit unique number and its safety,?having designed key digital services, such as digital locker, and for fast execution of schemes to push electronics manufacturing.

Last month, he tweeted his Aadhaar number, throwing an open challenge to people to show how mere knowledge of his Aadhaar number could cause him any ‘real harm’. The move caused a flutter as he was criticised for throwing such a challenge.

First Published: Aug 09, 2018 17:23 IST