Chawla Panel Gave Instructions for All Airwaves Allocations to be Done Through Auction in Future
Economy Current Affairs 2011. Government panel that was set up to recommend rules for pricing of all natural resources has declared that all future allocations of airwaves must be done through auctions.
Government panel that was set up to recommend rules for pricing of all natural resources has declared that all future allocations of airwaves must be done through auctions. The government panel is headed by former finance secretary, Ashok Chawla. In the draft report of the government panel, it has also called for spectrum trading to be permitted amongst telcos.
This panel was set up in the backdrop of the 2G spectrum scam, rampant cases of illegal mining, controversies related to pricing of natural gas, and the potential that shale gas and other natural resources of India’s economy. In addition to airwaves, the committee also examines other natural resources such as oil, gas, coal, mining, other minerals, water and land owned by the government, and is expected to submit its report by the end of April, 2011.
• The committeeheld that price discovered though market mechanisms could be in use to calculate the charges payable by legacy users. The panel called for the telecom department's wireless planning and coordination (WPC) wing to be made an autonomous agency. The WPC handles all issues related to allocation and management of airwaves. The recommendations also held that the WPC can be a separate body or be within TRAI.
• The Chawla committee has also called for delinking the allocation of telecom licences from mobile spectrum. Currently, mobile permits come bundled with start-up airwaves.
• It has also called for all airwaves to be identified and then to be clearly demarcated into commercial and non-commercial, primarily for defense and public security.
• The panel has also called for spectrum to be re-allocated based on actual users, reference to the allegations that many mobile phone companies report inflated customers base to corner this scarce resource.
• This panel's draft report also held that if the roadmap for future release of spectrum through auctions were to be made available, it would temper bids in future auctions.