Reliance’s Geo, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea will conduct tests with state-run MTNL in urban, rural and semi-urban areas, the ministry said in a statement.
The statement did not mention suppliers of participating network devices to Huawei and smaller Chinese rival ZTE.
Huawei declined to comment on the matter, while ZTE and the Indian ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the list of companies involved.
While India has not named Chinese players to take part in the six-month trial, which aims to test 5G gear and technology in a variety of environments, it has not banned carriers from supplying 5G devices.
In March, two government officials told Reuters that New Delhi would prevent mobile carriers from using telecom equipment made by Huawei under procurement rules due to come into force in June.
India is the second largest market in the world in terms of number of phone users. Authorities are wary of giving Chinese companies the business of new technology because of security concerns, government sources said earlier, and are willing to help local telecom equipment manufacturers.
The government’s telecom department said in March that after June 15, carriers could only buy certain types of devices from state-recognized “reliable sources” and added that New Delhi could also make a “no purchase” list of banned suppliers.
The list is likely to include Huawei and ZTE, Reuters reported in March.
Thomson Reuters 2021
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)