TRAI Re-appoints Itself

The re-emergence of Convergence Bill draft has achieved one important objective. It has protected the jobs of all the TRAI members under the guise of providing continuity in policy making.

The sections 70 and 71 which had been earlier omitted after discussions in an earlier GOT-IT have been reintroduced. These sections provide that the Chairperson and the members of the TRAI will be deemed to be appointed as the Chairperson and Members of the Communication Convergence Commission under the same terms and conditions under which they were so appointed under that Act.

This effectively seals any possibility of a change in the constitution of the Commission until the terms of the existing members expire.

Even though this is being justified through an elaborate explanation, the point is clear that the TRAI has been able to wield its influence against any possibility of a change. 

Does this mean that the Ministry of Information and Technology under Mr Pramod Mahajan and Ministry of Information and Broadcasting under Ms Sushma Swaraj have been effectively subordinated to the wishes of the Minsitry of Telecommuications under Mr Ram Vilas Paswan?... is any body's guess.

July 21 2001

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