On August 12, 2020, The Goa Government approved the state Telecommunications infrastructure policy 2020 which will adopt a single-window permit system- where only the public works department will grant permission to companies for setting up mobile towers, states the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant. The companies have to pay Rs 50,000 as a one-time license fee for local governing bodies.
Sawant avowed that there were 250 applications for mobile towers pending. The ministry is planning to club two to three operators on a single tower. However, installing a tower on private property requires a NOC from the landowner before applying for permission, he said.
Under the new policy the process of installation of mobile towers and RoW permissions shall be simplified, thus increasing the mobile coverage, avowed the Minister for Information and Technology (IT) Jennifer Monserrate, according to Herald Goa. Monserrate said that the policy has been discussed with various telecom providers such as BSNL, Reliance Jio, Indus Towers Ltd, and local internet service providers such as DNA, DTPL, UTL, etc and their inputs have been taken into consideration, according to The Times of India.
The Goa Government telecommunications infrastructure policy aims to increase efficiency in the telecommunication sector. The new policy is crucial for resolving internet connectivity, especially in rural areas. Internet connectivity has been a serious problem for online education during the Covid-19 pandemic. “We have been receiving complaints and also media reports about how students are facing hardships in online classes in the absence of a network. The policy will help to resolve this issue to a large extent,” Sawant said, according to Herald, Goa.
“The policy will aim to fulfill people’s expectations of fast and reliable internet connection anywhere and anytime as the demand for internet connectivity, through mobile or broadband connectivity has exploded,” Chief Minister Pramod Sawant.