The Ministry of Commerce & Industry introduced the National Digital Communication Policy in the year 2018.
Reason to introduce
The new National Digital Communication Policy was introduced replacing the existing National Telecom Policy, 2012, in order to meet the modern technological advancements such as 5G, Machine-to-machine or M2M (label that is used to describe any technology that helps the network devices to exchange information without manual assistance), Internet of Things (IoT) (seamlessly connected network system of embedded objects, where communication is possible without human intervention using standard and interoperable protocols), etc. in the Telecom sector, to achieve the goal of digital empowerment and improved well-being of the people of India, also to establish a secure, resilient, accessible and affordable Digital Communication Infrastructure and Services; supporting India’s transition to a digitally empowered economy and society.
The need for this policy arose to unlock productivity and reach the other underserved markets which would catalyze economic growth and development, generating various job opportunities, the policy aims for universal coverage to promote policies that increase opportunities for social and economic development due to the variation in the demographic profiles.
It was required to meet the next generation networks, to create a vibrant telecom competitive market, to promote and protect fair competition and to remove the regulatory barriers and the burden that could hamper the investments. It was estimated that 10% increase in broadband penetration would result in 1% GDP growth which would definitely be beneficial for the country.
What is the scheme about?
The scheme focuses on three missions that are to be achieved by the year 2022 and they are mentioned below:
- Connect India
To create a strong digital communication infrastructure which includes providing broadband connectivity to every citizen at the speed of 50Mbps (Rashtriya Broadband Abhiyan), provide 1Gbps by 2020 and 10Gbps by 2022 to all gram panchayats (BharatNet), connecting all the primary rural development institutions with 10Mbps which can be upgraded to 100Mbps (GramNet), to establish 1 million public Wi-Fi spots in the urban area (NagarNet), to establish 2 million Wi-Fi spots in the rural areas (JanWifi), Fibre first initiative, to strengthen the satellite communication, enable 100 Mbps broadband download for all primary development institutions, establishing National Digital Grid and ensuring customer satisfaction, quality of service.
Overall speaking, to promote broadband as a means for socio-economic development, keeping in mind social sustainability and ensuring service quality.
- Propel India
To enable the next generation technologies and services such as 5G, M2M, IoT, Cloud and Big data through foreign investments, different innovations and Intellectual Property Rights generation by attracting investment of USD 100 billion for Digital Communication, expansion of the IoT ecosystem to 5 billion connected devices, creating Globally recognized Intellectual Property Rights in India, development of Standard Essential Patents, train or re-skill one million men to learn the new technology skills and create various innovation start-ups in the digital communication sector in order to increase the employment opportunities.
- Secure India
To ensure sovereignty, safety and the security of digital communications by enabling a robust data protection regime for safeguarding the data privacy, creating a robust digital communication network, establish appropriate security standards, address various security issues relating to encryption and security clearances, enforcing accountability through appropriate institutional mechanisms so that safe and secured digital communications can be assured and by ensuring that the net neutrality principles (all internet connections being treated equally) are upheld are aligned with the required technologies.
The introduction of this policy was in order to meet the globalization requirements, the security standards, the digitization of the digital communication sector. The privacy of data is a major issue right now due to the continuous stealing and phishing of data and considering that there is a data privacy bill on which there is a major discussion going on.
The main aim of this policy is to meet their mission targets set by 2022. It aims at making the lives of citizens better and easier. Bringing in various foreign investments will increase the employment opportunities and also contribute to the economic growth of the country. It primarily aims to contribute to the overall development of the country and make the digital world a better place to live in.