Want A Mobile Connection In J&K, N-E? You Need A Witness
26 June 2007
The Times of India
New Delhi: If you think the process of verification for getting a mobile connection is tiresome, you are in for a shock. Especially, if you want a pre-paid connection in Jammu and Kashmir or the north-east. While the existing guidelines - already controversial - for a mobile connection anywhere in the country require detailed background information and documentation, including photo identity and proof of residence, the new measures for these terror-prone areas seek unprecedented details and guarantors. The stringent guidelines issued by the department of telecom (DoT) last week have left telecom operators in a tizzy. They have been told that no pre-paid connection in these areas should be issued without a witness verifying the applicant. Besides, the details given in the application need to be verified telephonically, the conversation has to be recorded and the entire information thus gathered has to be reconciled with the witness and the operator's database. All the records have to be made available to DoT and to the security agencies. The witness has to be an existing revenue-paying subscriber who has been active on the same service provider's network for at least three months. The operator has to randomly verify at least 10% of all witnesses within three months of the date of issue of new connections.