Regulators

DoT permits laying of overhead fiber ahead of 5G roll out

Amends the Indian Telegraph Right of Way Rules (RoW) and issues gazette notification

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New Delhi: The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has amended the Indian Telegraph Right of Way Rules (RoW), 2016 by way of a gazette notification permitting laying overhead optical fiber cable (OFC).

This will be applicable to all digital infrastructure (including Digital CATV & Broadband distribution).

Optical Fiber is a fundamental and structural part of both mobile and fixed broadband networks. Faster rollout of fiber is important for backhauling a large amount of data at high throughput, improving reliability, and reducing latency. The decision paves way for creating the necessary infrastructure to cater to forthcoming 5G rollouts in the country.

"These amendments will ease RoW-related permission procedures for establishment and augmentation of digital communications infrastructure across the country," a statement issued by the DoT said. “To achieve the objective of universal broadband connectivity at 50 Mbps to every citizen, fiberisation of telecommunication networks is essential.”

The amendment prescribes a one-time compensation of Rs 1,000 per kilometer for laying overhead OFC, which will bring further uniformity in charging of fee/ levy by local authorities for grant of permissions for this critical infrastructure.

Digital Infrastructure Providers Association (DIPA) director-general T R Dua told IANS, " We are sure this is just the beginning and this amendment will pave the way for other major reforms in line, encouraging investments and faster deployment of critical broadband infrastructure in the country enabling rollout of 5G and various new technologies.

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