Courts have killed the 'golden goose' telecom sector: Sibal

Last Updated: Wed, Apr 03, 2013 22:58 hrs

 New Delhi: Courts should not interfere in government policy making, as they did not have the experience or the ability to deal with economic policy issues, said Kapil Sibal, communications minister, at the meeting on Wednesday.

“At one point, telecom was seen as a golden goose, and the interference of the Supreme Court has made sure that it never lays golden eggs,” Sibal said, adding that nobody had gained from the court’s decision to cancel the 2G licences that were granted in 2008. “Between 2010 and 2013, with all the experiments, instead of Rs 1.76 lakh crore, the government has made just Rs 1,000 crore; consumer tariffs have gone up, while operators are under a debt burden of Rs 2.5 lakh crore,” he said.

The telecom minister also said the process of proper implementation required learing through experience.

“In 1994, the telecom sector was fairly new. Most decisions were taken in the absence of any prior experience. We, as an economy, were not conversant with how the sector works. But later the sector took off and the number of subscribers went up sharply,” he added.

According to Sibal, the decision makers may not have solution to every problem, but state governments should also take the blame for failing in implementation of plans, programmes and laws.

The telecom minister also said that good governance involves a vision for the future. “Considering the country’s current political structure, the vision has to be collaborative. It must be transparent for all to see. It should also have an element of accountability,” he added.

In a separate session, the new telecom secretary M.F. Farooqui said that there are “aspirational gaps” and “we need to dream, and dream big” for a better tomorrow.

More from Sify: