Reliance Jio at Loggerheads with Railways over right-of-way fee

Master jio logo-ver-CMYKNew Delhi:  Reliance Jio has filed a petition with the Delhi High Court against the fee collected by the Railways for giving right of way to lay optical fibre cable. According to Reliance Jio, the Railways was charging a high fee from telecom companies.

Right of way is required for telecom companies to lay optical cable under state-owned land. In this case, Reliance Jio had approached the Railways seeking permission to lay cable across stretches of land owned by the Railways.

According to an industry source, Reliance Jio had to seek legal recourse after discussions failed to arrive at mutually acceptable fee.

Reliance Jio is laying the optic fibre communcation network as part of its plans to launch 4G technology based broadband services. According to an internal Government note seen, Reliance Jio has told the court that the fee fixed by the Railways was discriminatory.

Currently M/s RailTel Corporation of India Limited – a Teleco PSU under Ministry of Railways enjoys free right of way along the Railway areas as per the MOU signed between Railways and RailTel. RailTel pays performance based dividend to Railways annually.