DIPA (Digital Infrastructure Providers Association) and COAI (Cellular Operators Association of India), two telecom industry representative bodies, have issued a caution notice to the public against fraud related to the installation of mobile towers on their properties.
The industry cautions against companies, agencies or individuals who could be fraudulently approaching people under the pretence of installing a mobile tower on the property and requesting for money to be deposited in bank accounts, calling it government tax for leasing the premises. According to the industry bodies, such individuals sometimes produce fake “No Objection Certificates” from the Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Technology to seem legitimate.
“The mobile towers are installed by the Telecom Infrastructure providers like Indus Towers, American Tower Corporation, Summit Digital Infrastructure, Ascend Telecom, Tower Vision. IPs are taking several steps to caution the public about the frauds and have devised various modes to collect information about potential locations through various channels such as toll-free numbers, websites, e-mails etc. Besides this, as a responsible association, DIPA has also been publishing public notices in newspapers for alerting the public about the tower frauds,” writes TR Dua, DG, DIPA, said in a press statement.
“Mobile towers are quintessential to ensure uninterrupted connectivity, support various critical services and maintain communication across the states. The public suffers gravely owing to the fraud related to mobile towers. This is causing a trust deficit and a sense of insecurity towards the team personnel working on the ground to build a robust communication network. The telecom industry remains committed to providing the best quality of services to its customers. Hence, we have collaborated with DIPA to build the required robust infrastructure. Also, we are issuing notices on various platforms to ensure that consumers are aware of these fraudulent practices.” added SP Kochhar, DG, COAI, in the joint press statement by the two industry bodies.
Mobile towers are installed either by Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) or Infrastructure Providers (IPs). If you have been approached by a TSP or an IP, you can verify their authenticity by visiting the updated list of approved TSPs and IPs on the Department of Telecommunications’ website at dot.gov.in.