The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has urged field officers to impose restrictions on the import of unauthorized wireless equipment. Also, it has rugged them to allow the import of mobile signal boosters or repeaters depending on the licence. All Principal Chief Commissioners (Customs) have received an instruction from the CBIC, said the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). It has flagged that unauthorized mobile signal repeaters and boosters are easily available in the grey market and e-commerce platforms as well.
No More Import Of Unauthorized Wireless Equipment
The operation of mobile signal boosters or repeaters that are unauthorized has been raising serious concerns for the cellular Telecom Service Providers (TSP) who are licensed. They were struggling to maintain the desired quality of service (QoS) due to the interference caused by these unauthorized repeaters.
Some walkie-talkie models are also available for sale on the various e-commerce platforms in the country and these units operate do not maintain compliance with DoT’s regulatory requirement.
Going by the Import Policy provisions that have been framed by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), the walkie-talkie sets and mobile signal repeaters or boosters are categorized under the transmission apparatus. These devices should get an import licence from the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology.
Notably, for this reason, the CBIC has asked field officers to adhere strictly to the import policy framed by DGFT to limit the inflow and usage of wireless equipment that are unauthorized in the country.
Why Mobile Signal Boosters Are Illegal?
Basically, a signal booster amplifies the mobile phone signal strength in the vicinity. It is used in places with inconsistent or weak signal strength. When these signal boosters are unauthorized or not registered, then these are illegal as they use the spectrum that they have not paid for. Eventually, it interferes with airwaves and distorts the mobile signal of other users within its vicinity.
Also, these devices make mobile phones transmit higher power to get stable connectivity within the site and lead to poor network to others and high battery consumption. With the illegal use of wireless equipment, there is a degradation of telecom services rather than improvement in signal issues.