Administrator USOF was appointed on 1.6.2002. Constitution, Powers and Functions of the Office of Universal Service Fund Administrator

The office of the Administrator USOF is an attached office of the Department of Telecommunications (DOT).

An Inter-Ministerial Advisory Committee with representatives from Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai, Indian Institute of management, Ahmedabad, Ministry of Finance, Minsity of Law and Justice, Planning Commission, TRAI and DOT has been constituted under the Chairmanship of Administrator USOF for suggesting measures on important issues.

The tender committee for USOF Schemes consists of Chairman (Telecom Commission), Administrator USOF, Member (F) and Member (P).

The office of the Administrator will consist of the Administrator and Deputy Administrators in SAG Scale, Directors from IP&T AFS, Gr. 'A' and ITS Gr. 'A' Other necessary staff in the Sr. Time Scale and JTS/Gr. 'B' of the IP&TAFS and ITS services will function under the Deputy Administrator/Directors. The Deputy Administrators will be placed directly under the control of the Administrator Cadre control of ITS/IP&T A..FS will however, continue to be with the respective Cadre Controlling authority.

There will be an Inter-Ministerial Advisory Committee chaired by the Administrator and appointed with the approval of Minister of Communications and Information Technology, consisting of officers not below the rank of Joint Secretary from the Ministry of Finance, Planning Commission, Ministry of Law, Department of Telecommunications., Telecom Regulatory Authority of India and professionals I experts in areas of Telecom, Finance, Economics and Management. The Con1mittee will meet at such time and places as fixed by the Administrator.

The Office of the Administrator shall be responsible for .

  • Implementation of the guidelines laid down by the Government for providing Universal Service Support
  • Suggesting such changes in policy as may be deemed necessary for the implementation of Universal Service Support
  • Forecasting the requirement of Universal Service Funds for each financial year and obtaining approval from the Government through the Department of Telecom
  • Ensuring that the prescribed Universal Service Levy is credited to the appropriate Universal Service Fund on a regular basis

The Administrator shall have powers of Head of Department and shall be reporting directly to the Minister of Communications and Information Technology. He shall be responsible for implementation of Universal Service Support in accordance with the guidelines laid down by Government.

In regard to the implementation of Universal Service Support Policy guidelines, the Administrator shall exercise the following powers, subject to the approval of the Minister of Communications and Information Technology:

  • Formulation of benchmark costs.
  • Finalizing of bidding procedures/processes including relevant terms and conditions for this purpose
  • Constitution of appropriate evaluation and approval Committees for recommending successful bidders
  • Issuing LOI to the successful bidder and finalizing contracts in agreements

All important matters of policy affecting License conditions of service providers will be dealt with in co-ordination and active consultation with Department of Telecom.

Within the overall approved budget and in accordance with contracts/agreements with successful bidders, the Administrator shall have full powers for implementation of Universal Service Support Policy. However, for operational, technical and financial matters, the Administrator may consult Department of Telecom whenever deemed necessary.

The following rules are made for the convenient transaction of business:- The Administrator will 

  • Deal with broad policies and guiding principles for the administration of Universal Service Fund
  • Review from time to time scope of USO and suggest such modifications therein to the Department of Telecom as may be deemed necessary.
  • To estimate the aggregate of the USO support requirement on an annual basis.
  • Develop benchmark costs for providing VPT/PTICIHI)TIC/Rural DELs at given locations and other models for estimating the cost of providing such facilities based on optimal network engineering in SDCA.
  • Recommend changes in rates of Universal Service Levy to Telecom Commission as and when deemed necessary.
  • Settle claims of eligible Service providers after due verification and make disbursements accordingly from the USO Fund Specify relevant formats, procedures and financial data/records to be maintained and furnished by the various service providers.
  • Evolve a mechanism for monitoring the performance of the successful bidders with reference to the implementation of the contracts finalized with them
  • Appoint Consultants and Professional agencies for evolving benchmark cost and detailing bidding procedures and such other matter necessary for implementing Universal Service Support. Appointments and Remunerations of Consultants will be in accordance with the Guidelines I Rules of Department of Personnel and Training.
  • Formulate contracts/agreements and have them executed for the purpose for the implementation of USO.

The expenses relating to the establishment of USO administration including pay and allowances, TA, DA and other expenses of officials -will be made from the budget of DOT. Support of DOT will be provided for day-to-day operations of the Office of the Administrator.

SL No. Name From To Remark
1 Shri Shyamal Ghosh 1.6.2002 31.5.2005 Nil
2 Shri Shantanu Consul 31.5.2005 20.2.2008 Nil
3 Shri Ajay Bhattacharya 20.2.2008 2.11.2011 Nil
4 Shri N. Ravi Shanker 2.11.2011 31.07.2014 "Look after" charge from 2.11.2011 to 4.12.2011
5 Smt. Rita Teaotia, AS(T), DoT 01.08.2014 28.09.2014 (Additional Charge)
6 Smt. Aruna Sundararajan 29.09.2014 29.10.2015 Nil
7 Shri N. Sivasailam 30.10.2015 13.03.2016 "Look after"
8 Shri Sanjay Singh 14.03.2016 31.01.2019 Nil
9 Smt. Anshuli Arya 31.01.2019 24.09.2021 Nil
10 Shri Hari Ranjan Rao 24.09.2021 04.05.2022 Nil
11 Shri V. L. Kantha Rao 04.05.2022 31.08.2023 "Look after"
12 Smt. Gunjan Dave 01.09.2023 22.11.2023 (Additional Charge)
13 Shri. Niraj Verma 23.11.2023 Till Date