The department of telecommunications (DoT) has asked the country’s external intelligence agency to send to the ministry of home affairs (MHA) its communication citing concerns on certain characteristics of leading Chinese telecommunications equipment and services company.
The DoT, in an internal communication, had said its lack of clarity on the kind of action to be taken on the pertinent input from the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). “Perhaps, this relates more to MHA and MEA (ministry of external affairs), and RAW may be requested to send this to MHA,” the note said.Earlier, RAW had spoken about Huawei Technologies Co Ltd getting loans from banks in its native East Asian country, the DoT communication recalled.
The communication said Huawei, headquartered at Shenzhen in the southeast coast province of Guangdong, is known to have links with People’s Liberation Army, the unified military organisation. China’s ministry of state security and ZTE Corporation (also based in Shenzhen) has, according to the note, “always been keen” to sell telecom equipment to Indian operators so as to enlarge its foothold in this country’s telecom sector.
In 2010, state-owned BSNL had on security grounds cancelled a contract awarded to Huawei and ZTE for GSM projects in the country’s northern and eastern zones even though their bid was the lowest, RAW said in the letter quoted by DoT.
Since then, Huawei and ZTE “have launched an aggressive ‘Indianisation’ drive” to change their public perception in India, the note claimed. The 1988-founded Huawei had recently decided to appoint an Indian as the chairman of its wholly-owned subsidiary here, and even taken some Indians on its board of directors.
ZTE also, according to the note, plans a revamp of its five-member board in India by taking more people of this country.
Huawei, reacting to the development, said it had fully complied with all legal and regulatory norms, and has been transparent in its dealings with all stakeholders during its 12 years of corporate citizenship of India. “We remain the only company to have offered to share the source code with the Government of India in the interest of national security,” it said.