Idea under scanner for 3,640 connections to 1 man

Last Updated: Thursday, August 5, 2010 - 17:39

New Delhi: In a major breach of licence terms
and conditions, Birla group firm Idea Cellular has issued a
whopping 3,640 connections to a single person and his company,
endangering national security, Parliament was informed on Thursday.
"Yes, Idea Cellular had issued 3,640 post-paid
connections to a single person and his company, Limco Sales
Corporation of Delhi and as per the report of the Department
of Telecom, the bulk connections have been rented out to other
customers," Minister of State for Telecom and IT Sachin Pilot
said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

He said the Home Ministry has intimated that security
agencies face problems in establishing identity of actual
users in cases where bulk connections have been activated in
the name of a single user/location/organisation, and the
numbers have been further distributed/rented for use.
To a query whether this endangers national security,
Pilot said "this practice of providing mobile connections to
an individual without maintaining his identity particulars has
security implications and operational activities of security
agencies are hampered due to non-availability of identity of a
particular suspected target."

Idea Cellular has over 68 million mobile subscribers and
has operations in most of the circles across the country.

Pilot said the licence conditions provide that "utmost
vigilance should be exercised in providing bulk telephone
connections for a single user as well as for a single
location."

Provision of 10 or more connections may be taken as bulk
for this purpose, he said.

"Special verification of bonafide should be carried out
for providing such bulk connections. Information about bulk
connections shall be forwarded to respective Vigilance Telecom
Monitoring cell of DoT and concerned officials authorised by
DoT and security agencies from time to time on monthly basis,"
he said.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, August 5, 2010 - 17:39

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