To check misuse of Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards, the government has asked telecom service providers not to provide mobile connection for more than three months to any foreign tourist visiting India.
According to fresh guidelines, which came into effect recently, the Department of Telecom (DoT) has told the service providers that the proof for issuance of a mobile connection to any foreigner would be the passport having a valid visa.
“Any mobile connection issued to a foreigner should not have validity beyond the validity of the visa. In case of foreign tourist, the validity of connection should not be beyond the visa period and also not exceed three months at a time even if the validity of the visa is beyond three months,” the guidelines, vetted by the Union Home Ministry, said.
Instances of misuse
The move comes in the wake of instances, where mobile connections used by foreigners were misused by some people even after the departure of the foreign nationals from the country, official sources said.
For address proof of a foreigner, the address of the local reference which may also be that of the tour operator shall be taken and in case there is no local reference, the address of stay shall be taken, say the guidelines.
Licensee must confirm
For filling a Consumer Application Form (CAF), the DoT has made it mandatory for the licensee to sign the form prior to activation of the SIM card thereby certifying that the information provided on the form is correct.
“The date of sale of SIM and activation of SIM is required to be established from the entries in the CAF. For this purpose, entry of date is to be made with the signature of subscriber at the time of filing of CAF,” it said.