Telecom Minister A Raja, who has retained the portfolio he held in the previous UPA government, said bringing down mobile tariffs to 10 paise a minute for local calls and 25 paise a minute for STD calls would be on top of his agenda during his second tenure.
In India, at present local call rates vary from 40 paise to Re 1, and national call rates from Re 1 to Rs 2 a minute.
Raja, who got the prestigious Communications and IT Ministry for the second consecutive term, feels there is enough scope for tariffs to come down and the policies followed during his previous stint would help in achieving this.Besides, lowering the call tariffs auction of spectrum for 3G services and introduction of IT at the lowest level in government to make possible paperless functioning are also on top of his agenda.
The Minister is likely to take charge next week as he, along with his other cabinet colleagues, flew to Chennai this morning to seek their leader’s (Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi) blessings.
“Auctioning of 3G spectrum is on top of my priority list,” Raja said.