In a rather controversial step taken by the Indian officials, China based telecom equipment maker Huawei has been shown the green flag to set up a new research lab in the city of Bangalore. The new research centre will be dedicated to testing and analysing foreign telecom kits for any suspicious technologies, such as covert-listening-devices embedded into them.
The decision to recruit the Chinese firm, which is known for allegedly being too close with both the Chinese government and the PLA (People’s Liberation Army, China), for handling such an important and sensitive responsibility has been thrashed by many security and strategic experts from within and outside the country.
Some even went to the extent of calling this initiative taken by the Indian establishment, equivalent to “letting the fox to guard the henhouse”.
As part of this new move, Huawei will be responsible for examining each and every telecom kit imported into the country-including those shipped by Huawei itself - for signs of illicit spying software and hardware.
The research lab will reportedly be housed at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. Both IISc and Huawei will soon sign a memorandum of understanding, based on which the Chinese telecom giant will provide "documentation, expertise, methods and standards for studying telecom equipment," a government official said, Economic Times reports.