India prohibits import of GSM handsets without IMEI

As has been reported at, the Commerce Ministry of India has banned the import of mobile phones with no IMEI.

This is somewhat funny, as the IMEI is stored in flash memory in all the phones that I have seen in recent years. Tools to erase or change the IMEI can be found for many popular phones, including (but not limited) to the many MTK based inexpensive phones from China.

So sure, you can now no longer import a device legally with no IMEI, but well, any self-respecting organized criminal will find a way to erase or alter the IMEI anyway ;)