TRAI, on Tuesday, had suggested that operators pay an additional one-time fee for holding spectrum beyond 6.2 MHz
The government today said telecom companies would be heard before a decision is taken on the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) recommendations on spectrum related issues, including levying a one-time charge for excess air waves, reports PTI.
"It will be deliberated in the ministry, thereafter due process will be taken up...It is necessary before taking any decision through the Telecom Commission. If necessary, patient hearing will be given to the stakeholders," minister A Raja told reporters in New Delhi.
TRAI, on Tuesday, had suggested that operators pay an additional one-time fee for holding spectrum beyond 6.2 MHz.
If implemented, this will be a big blow to GSM players like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar and Idea Cellular that have well over 6.2 MHz of spectrum and will have to cough up more to retain the additional radio waves.
Bharti and Vodafone had termed the TRAI proposals as "arbitrary and shocking", while Idea Cellular said the recommendations had "impressions of crony capitalism".
Telecom stocks were battered following the TRAI proposals in anticipation of their balance sheets being hit by huge payout by operators.
On the ongoing third generation (3G) auctions, Mr Raja said the bidding should be completed within a couple of days.
"(It should be completed) within a couple of days, it has to close but people are bidding. Let us see. It has to take its natural course."
Asked about the revenue the government expected to collect, Mr Raja said bidding is still going on and it is difficult to project revenues at this stage.
Women in Indian ads are depicted in a regressive, medieval way
Sometimes I wonder why. In Circa 2010 AD, when urban women have smashed every possible glass (and concrete) ceiling, and are at par with men on every single profession and activity, advertisers in India continue to project the modern woman as either a sex object or an obedient housewife. This was the case thirty years ago, and it’s pretty much still the case now, despite seismic changes in gender equality in the real-time world. Across advertising for all product categories you’ll notice this bias. The man is always the one shown enjoying a rocking, ambitious career and lifestyle while the woman is mainly seen doing householdy things, looking after the children, or gladly stripping for manly products.
Two recent campaigns come to the mind immediately. One, the continuing Axe commercials, which suggest that women are like rats that follow the man around as if he is the irresistible Mr Pied Piper of Hemlines (pardon the pun). Each time he uses the spray, they go crazy. The cricket-based commercials run during the IPL coverage were totally regressive. Women chase down fielders and bowlers and batsmen in hordes. And they fall all over these sods, unable to resist the so-called ‘Axe-effect’.
Then there’s the recent Tanishq commercial. This one suggests that the entire raison-de-etre of a woman’s existence is her ultimate marriage. No career, no goals, no ambitions. And yes, they don’t even care to depict a rural woman behaving thus (which itself would be sad). A modern, urban girl is featured wanting to get married ONLY so that she can get to adorn some glittering Tanishq jewels! Surely, this should be insulting to today’s women.
Which then brings me to two observations: No, no one has bat an eyelid. There are no protests, no road-shows. These ads haven’t been pulled up for showing women in a poor light, and no woman is complaining either. And that’s what makes me wonder. Could it be that the modern Indian woman doesn’t care for such an image being projected of her? Or worse, is she actually enjoying this regressive, medieval depiction? Also, marketers aren’t such fools as to be running such seemingly offensive creatives, unless they have an insight that Indian women mainly want sub-servience and shaadi in their dreary lives. And not much else.
That, under the mask of equality, there lies a woman who refuses to evolve with the changing times. That, what is shown in our TV serials, is a true reflection of the Indian woman.
Quite frightening, if the above is true. And the silence from the feminists on such ads is deafening indeed.
It plans to complete the award process for construction of 36,000km of roads in the next three years
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) today said it needs to borrow up to Rs33,000 crore over the next three years to implement road projects on build, operate and transfer (BOT) basis, reports PTI.
The borrowing requirement for the current fiscal, in which the authority has set a target to award 12,000 km of road projects, is up to Rs7,000 crore.
"Our fund requirement in the next three years will be Rs32,000-Rs33,000 crore for BOT projects. We are looking to raise Rs5,000-Rs7,000 crore from various options this fiscal. We are discussing with the World Bank also, but this is at a preliminary state," NHAI member finance, JN Singh, told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting.
"We are planning to award 12,000 km of roads this financial year and investment required will be roughly Rs1.20 lakh crore," Mr Singh said.
The borrowing requirement for the next fiscal is Rs11,000 crore, while for 2012-13, the authority plans to raise Rs15,000 crore, he said.
At present, 54 EC tax exemption bonds are the main source of funding for the government's portion in the highways project.
The authority responsible for implementing the National Highways Development Project (NHDP) in seven phases, has already made it clear that it needs to borrow up to Rs20,000 crore per year for the next 15 years to implement Rs9 lakh crore worth of road projects in the public-private-partnership mode till 2031-32.
"NHAI would need Rs10,000-Rs20,000 crore annually as borrowing from the domestic and international market for a period of next 15 years," NHAI chairman Brijeshwar Singh said earlier this week.
As per the government's target of building 20 km road every day, NHAI plans to complete award process for construction for 36,000 km of roads in the next three years.