Feeds

India to battle Maoists with more mobiles

Tower-building project will boost coverage in leftist-controlled regions

Reducing security risks from open source software

The Indian government is looking to build nearly 3,000 mobile towers in areas across the country without coverage, in a Rs. 30 billion (£358m) bid to tackle left wing extremism.

The mobile infrastructure project will cover 2,199 locations in nine states where militant Maoists known as Naxals are prevalent. Naxals are seen by the government as significant destabilising force in the country.

In a written reply to a question in parliament, IT minister Killi Kruparani said: “In the 12th Plan period, all villages which presently do not have mobile coverage will be provided with connectivity under a scheme funded by the USOF [Universal Service Obligation Fund].”

The USOF has already enabled the building of hundreds of mobile towers in Naxal strongholds around the country, thanks to its Shared Mobile Infrastructure Scheme (SMIS) – an initiative begun in 2007 to subsidise construction and management costs.

However, the current plans are being pushed through by the Department of Telecommunications and Ministry of Home Affairs with one eye on India’s general elections next year, according to The Hindu.

A senior MHA official told the paper that the project would not only help development of the impoverished tribal areas in which Left Wing Extremists have historically based been strongest, but also aid state paramilitary and police in their long running battle against militant Naxals.

It's unclear exactly what kind of strategic advantage mobile coverage would give the government security forces, given that switching on a signal would surely also benefit the Maoists.

One potential angle is the authorities would be able to monitor communications, using its newly installed Central Monitoring System (CMS).

According to the 2011 Census, some 53.2 per cent of Indian households have access to a mobile phone, a figure greater than the 46.9 per cent which have indoor toilet facilities. ®

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws
Only 49 politcos voted against DRIP bill
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.