Digital Infrastructure Providers Association (DIPA) has welcomed the new policy released by the Department of Science and Technology, government of Madhya Pradesh (MP). The policy aims to facilitate, simplify, encourage, and regulate the process of establishing infrastructure to provide wireline/wireless voice and data access services, particularly in unserved areas, by entities legally authorised and licensed by the government of India.

The policy aims to provide services to citizens and organisations seeking affordable, reliable, high speed and demand-based voice and data access services. The charges defined in the policy are in line with central Right of Way (RoW) Rules, 2016 and its amendments of 2021 and 2022. The policy encourages the use of state-owned infrastructure of the Department of Energy, government of MP.

Commenting on the development, T.R. Dua, director general, DIPA, said, “The newly released MP policy accomplishes a long outstanding demand of the telecom industry and will provide a big impetus to installation of telecom infrastructure in Madhya Pradesh. This will enable provision of 5G services to persons residing in MP. DIPA applauds the government of MP for coming up with a new industry supportive policy in keeping with the aspirations of the customers and technology requirements. DIPA also appreciates the efforts of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and National Broadband Mission (NBM) for their resolute approach towards persuading MP to come on board.”

The policy encourages the deployment of towers, optical fibre cable (OFC), micro sites, small cells, in-building solutions (IBS), and use of street furniture for faster rollout of 5G services. The policy also supports the regularisation of the existing telecom infrastructure though the rates mentioned (Rs 20,000/- + other fee as per policy) are on the higher side. The policy encourages the time bound clearance for both underground and overground telecom infrastructure with a time period of clearance of three days for the no objection certificate (NOC) submitted under the private property. The telecom infrastructure installed on the government and private land/ buildings would be exempted from the payment of property tax to the local bodies under its jurisdiction. There is no need for change of land use (CLU) on the government lands/ buildings on which the telecom infrastructure is installed.