English, Fact Check, Fake News

Mobile Tower Installation Fraud: At least a decade old but still continues


A mail has been received by FACTLY to check the authenticity of a ‘TRAI registration copy for tower installation’, which the sender’s family received from an unknown source. The family were asked to lease their land for the installation of a mobile tower if they are interested. They were sent a NOC (No Objection Certificate) and were asked to pay some amount for TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) registration. Let’s check the authenticity of the document.

Claim: TRAI Registration document asking registration charges from the landowner for installation of mobile tower.

Fact: The document is fake. Previously, on multiple occasions, TRAI has clarified that ‘Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is neither directly nor indirectly involved in any manner, in levy of any tax / fees on leasing of premises for installation of mobile towers or for issuing any ‘No Objection Certificates’ for the purpose’. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has also clarified the same. Hence the claim made in the post is FALSE.

When searched if TRAI issues any such document for installation of mobile towers, it was found that TRAI has already clarified multiple times that they do not levy any fees or issue any such ‘No Objection Certificate’ for installation of mobile towers. The press release by TRAI in 2019 regarding the fraud can be seen below:

Also, TRAI has uploaded a public awareness video, regarding the mobile tower fraud, on their YouTube channel.

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has also clarified the same. The public awareness document issued by DoT on this matter can be found here. Also, the Press Information Bureau (PIB) has done a fact-check on the fake NOCs.

The mobile tower installation fraud is not a recent one. The fraudsters have been following the same modus operandi at least since 2011. ‘The Hindu’ article published in 2011 on the cellphone tower installation fraud can be read here.

To sum it up, neither TRAI nor DoT issues any such NOCs for installation of mobile towers.


About Author

Comments are closed.