[ad_1]

Telecom Bill 2023: What powers it gives the government for ‘national security’

Context- On December 18, 2023, Ashwini Vaishnaw, the Union Minister for Communications, Electronics & Information Technology, introduced the Telecommunications Bill, 2023 in the Lok Sabha. One of the significant provisions of this bill is related to national security. It allows the government to take temporary control of telecom services in case of an emergency. The bill provides more details on this provision.

What is the Telecommunications Bill, 2023?

  • The Indian government has proposed the Telecommunications Bill, 2023 to replace the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885, the Indian Wireless Telegraphy Act, 1933, and the Telegraph Wires (Unlawful Possession) Act, 1950.
  • The new bill aims to create a legal and regulatory framework that focuses on safe and secure telecommunication networks, which are vital for the security of the country and the growth of the economy and society.
  • The statement of objectives and reasons of the bill highlights the importance of the telecommunication sector as a key driver of economic and social development, and the gateway to digital services.
  • It also emphasizes the need to create a legal and regulatory framework that serves the needs of society, given the massive changes in the nature of telecommunication, its usage, and underlying technologies in the past decade.

What does the Telecom Bill say on national security?

  • The Telecommunications Bill, 2023 allows the Central or State Government to take temporary possession of any telecommunication service or network from an authorized entity in the event of a public emergency, including disaster management, or in the interest of public safety.
  • The bill also provides for appropriate mechanisms to ensure that messages of a user or group of users authorized for response and recovery during public emergency are routed on priority.
  • In addition, the bill states that the central or state government can direct that messages transmitted or received by any telecommunication service or network shall not be transmitted, or shall be intercepted or detained, or shall be disclosed in intelligible format to the officer mentioned in such order, in the interest of the sovereignty and integrity of India, defence and security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, or for preventing incitement to the commission of any offence.
  • However, the press messages, intended to be published in India, of correspondents accredited to the Central Government or a State Government shall not be intercepted or detained, unless their transmission has been prohibited under relevant rules
  • The Telecommunications Bill, 2023 empowers the Central Government to direct any authorized entity to transmit specific messages in its telecommunication services or network, if it appears necessary or expedient in the public interest. The bill specifies that the messages should be transmitted in such a manner as may be specified by the Central Government.

Conclusion- The Telecommunications Bill, 2023 aims to replace the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885, the Indian Wireless Telegraphy Act, 1933, and the Telegraph Wires (Unlawful Possession) Act, 1950. The bill seeks to create a legal and regulatory framework that focuses on safe and secure telecommunication networks, which are vital for the security of the country and the growth of the economy and society.

The bill amends and consolidates the laws relating to the development, expansion, and operation of telecommunication services and networks, assignment of spectrum, and matters connected therewith.

[ad_2]

Source link

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *