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CCI is awaiting for Net Neutrality norms before going ahead with Telcom plans

As the debate on net neutrality is going on, Competition Commission is waiting for regulations to be approved before deciding on if the internet firms and telecom’s actions can amount to unfairness. Competition Commission of India has started keeping an eye on the internet service providers and telecom operators as to if they are indulging in any wrongful business tactics.

Before moving further the regulator has come to the conclusion that there is much need for more clarity on regulations to bring in this net neutrality. CCI official told that as to net neutrality there was no proper regulations till now, so authorised officers were considering on the matter and then commission will check the matter. TRAI which is the telecom ombudsman has sought explanations on net neutrality regulatory framework but the view is completely divided on this matter. Centre has however said that it will make sure that there is non-discriminatory access for the internet use to all. Without any discrimination or priority the net neutrality principle will apply to all equally being an individual or a company.

When few internet company and telecom operators came down with a new plan where they offered preferential treatment for some internet users, Net Neutrality issue has sparked off.  Airtel Zero which was launched by Bharti Airtel, where it allows customers to get access to many mobile applications that are free of charge and Start-up Company or large companies will pay the data charges. Even Uninor and Reliance Communications have tied up with WhatsApp, Facebook and Wikipedia to provide free usages to many consumers.  TRAI said that they do not want to police the Internet but the nondescript principle regarding no blocking cannot be debated.  Net neutrality should be read in terms of experimenting with many different ways of giving cheap internet facility which should be checked by TRAI was the notion of Pranesh Prakash internet expert.

The term net neutrality does not sound familiar to many people and some may wonder what is bad or going wrong if a service provider provides a service for free.  It means that internet providers must give access to all the applications without blocking any product on the website.

by Sushma Javare.