Monday, September 16, 2013

BMC mulls new policy

Cell towers: BMC mulls new policy

MUMBAI: After finalising the draft policy on the installation of mobile towers, the civic body is now considering making modifications to it based on the revised guidelines issued by the Union department of telecommunications (DoT) on August 1.
A major addition to the DoT guidelines was making it mandatory for service providers to get an NOC from the building’s owner or the housing society every time the mobile tower’s contract is renewed. While the BMC’s draft policy mandates companies getting consent from occupants of the topmost floors of buildings, the provision of obtaining an NOC from 70% of residents is a onetime condition.
“As the guidelines have been revised, we are studying how the new provisions can be incorporated into the policy,” said municipal commissioner Sitaram Kunte. The policy is expected to be finalised in fifteen days, after which it will be put before the civic standing committee and the civic general body for approval.
Experts said civic authorities should adopt a city-centric view while finalising the policy “The DoT guidelines are made with respect to the country. The BMC should consider city-specific aspects such as its population density and practices before installing towers,” said Jitendra Gupta, an activist.

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