Indian ISPs Are Giving Up Due Unfair Government Policies

by Paul Joseph on December 28, 2012 · 0 comments

Those of you have been reading our blog will agree as to how the Indian Internet scenario is all set to boom thanks to the increasing scope for penetration due to mobility and other factors. Thus it is coming as a shock to us that standalone Indian Internet Service Providers are finding the business landscape in the country too tough to operate. The Hindu Businessline is reporting that the number of small ISPs that have returned their operating license to the Government now stand at 500. Currently, there are only 150 ISPs that are operating in the country. The strange bit is that the total number of licenses gotten by ISPs till date stands at 903. So why is this happening? The answer, it seems, lies in poor Government policies. Apparently, the Indian Government has been one-sided with their policy decisions which are meant for the telecom bigwigs. The smaller ISPs have apparently been stopped from releasing and operating the full set of their features. Rajesh Chharia, President of the Internet Service Providers Association of India has this to say. “When the Government opened up the Internet space for private players, many entrepreneurs came forward thinking that they can leverage the demand. But over the last 10 years, standalone Internet companies have got a raw deal.” The Government has also not honored initial license agreements thus removing a huge chunk of revenue potential for these smaller companies. For example, the Government ruled that small ISPs could not offer Virtual Private Networks (VPN), even though this was in the original license agreements. The backpedalling resulted in the loss of upto 60% revenues for these players. Another restriction is that of VOIP which small ISPs were not allowed to do. This part of the policy was majorly biased towards the bigger telecom companies while competent smaller companies struggled to make the business work in spite of the restrictions. The Internet segment in India should ideally be a very democratic one which is fair towards both the big and smaller players. To keep this going, the Indian Government needs to sit up and take notice of the problems of smaller ISPs. For this to happen, they need to lobbied aggressively. When I say lobby, I don’t mean to say that the Government should be bribed. What I mean is that these companies should bunch together and make their plight known to the right authorities in a very direct and open manner. Besides this, the smaller companies should also look at creative ways to grow their businesses. The Internet is a boundless domain where a lot of things are possible if you have the right idea and aptitude. What are your thoughts on this issue? Share them with us. Image Source | Looking For A Social Media Agency?? – Contact WATConsult – India’s Leading Social Media Agency

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