Tribune News Service
New Delhi, November 6
Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla on Friday said the government was yet to take a call on allowing Chinese telecom companies to enter into the 5G trials in India but acknowledged that the penetration of the neighbouring country into the existing network is too extensive.
Discussions still on
The government in any case has not taken any call on 5G. Discussions are still on. The penetration of existing telecom hardware and software is too extensive. – Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Union Home Secretary
The Home Secretary, however, contended that measures were being taken to ensure “safety and security” of the communication network across the country.
“On 5G, the government in any case has not taken any call. Discussions are still on…when it will be allowed and who are the people to be allowed. The penetration of existing telecom hardware and software is too extensive,” Bhalla said while replying to a question at the Diamond Jubilee webinar organised by National Defence College.
The Home Secretary said unless India got a substitute, the existing facilities could not be closed down abruptly. “Unless we have a substitute available, we just can’t switch off and say that this will not be allowed. But the government can definitely make special safeguards and ensure the safety and security of the system of communication of the country. That we are having and we are developing and we will definitely be able to deal with that,” he said.
The US has banned Huawei, the world’s leader in telecom equipment and the number two smartphone producer, over concerns of security and Washington has been putting pressure on other countries to restrict the operations of the Chinese telecom firm. India, however, is yet to take a call on whether it intends to place curbs on Huawei or allow the Chinese telecom equipment maker to participate in the upcoming 5G trials.