India -- VSAT Licensing For Data Services

The Indian New Telecom Policy 1999 included provisions relating to the issuance of non-exclusive licences for the provision of VSAT services within the territorial boundaries of India.  Two types of VSAT licences were developed pursuant to the New Telecom Policy 1999, namely a commercial VSAT service provider licence and a captive VSAT licence.

According to the terms of these two types of VSAT licences, the licensees are authorised to provide data connectivity using VSAT technology between various sites scattered throughout India.  These sites are meant to form parts of a Closed User Group (“CUG”). 

A commercial VSAT licensee may provide a number of CUGs on a commercial basis to subscribers using a shared hub infrastructure.  In the case of a captive VSAT licence, only one CUG may be set up for the captive use of the licensee. 

The VSAT licences do not authorise the provision of long distance carrier services.  Data transmission is only permissible between the sites that form part of the CUG.  The VSAT licensees are not permitted to link their networks with the PSTN.

More information about the nature of the VSAT licences and the application procedure for these licences may be found in the Broad Guidelines for Issue of Licence for Commercial VSAT Service Providers and Captive VSAT Services.  A link to this document is set out below.  Also included below are links to the Application for VSAT Licence, the standard licence agreement for the provision of commercial VSAT services, and the standard licence agreement for captive VSAT services.



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