According to a report in Times of India, the Indian territory of Rajasthan can receive signals from Pakistani mobile companies up to 15-20 kms deep within their range. The report claims that Indian smugglers and spies residing in Jaisalmer and Barmer use Pakistani SIM cards so that they can relay strategic and confidential information to Pakistani intelligence agencies.
The international rules for telecom sector allow up to 500 metres of signal penetration inside the borders of neighbouring countries. Since, Pakistani mobile companies signals go beyond this permitted range, the Indian authorities are claiming that Pakistan stands in violation of the international regulations.
The Pakistani telecom companies whose signals are reaching India include Veridatel, Oasis Pak, Telenor, PKPL, Pak Pal Mobiling, U-phone, PT Soral and Hutch. Since the signals are of different frequency and network, hence Indian authorities say that they cannot even jam them. Now, Indian telecom authorities want to take up the matter to a higher level so that it can be looked into properly.
However, one thing which is difficult to believe is the strength and range of Pakistani mobile companies’ signals as often within Pakistan, they do get disrupted due to adverse weather conditions. Also, if Indian criminals are using Pakistani SIM cards, then they are not in control of the Pakistani authorities being external subjects.
The Indian government must take action against these smugglers and spies. Secondly, Pakistani intelligence agencies know better ways than to depend on such spies who use Pakistani SIM cards that they get easily detected by the Indian intelligence agencies. Smuggling between India and Pakistan is a serious matter that both states must make strong policies against. This situation also points out the need to develop cooperation in the telecom sectors of both Indian and Pakistan.