Industry

Call drop penalty to stay for now, says TRAI Chief

Earlier this week, in a joint letter to the telecom regulator TRAI, the two industry bodies – COAI and AUSPI, had sought withdrawal of the regulation that mandated services provider to pay subscribers Re.1 for every call drop they experience on their network, subject to a cap of three call drops a day, starting from January 1, 2016.

Earlier this week, in a joint letter to the telecom regulator TRAI, the two industry bodies – COAI and AUSPI, had sought withdrawal of the regulation that mandated services provider to pay subscribers Re.1 for every call drop they experience on their network, subject to a cap of three call drops a day, starting from January 1, 2016.   | Photo Credit: V_V_Krishnan

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Days after operators’ requested withdrawal of regulation on compensating users for call drops, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on Thursday said the regulations are valid as of now and operators should ready their systems to comply with them from January 1.

The regulator will, however, examine the issue raised by the industry, post which a final decision will be taken.

Earlier this week, in a joint letter to the telecom regulator TRAI, the two industry bodies – COAI and AUSPI, had sought withdrawal of the regulation that mandated services provider to pay subscribers Re.1 for every call drop they experience on their network, subject to a cap of three call drops a day, starting from January 1, 2016.

“I have made it very clear. It’s a valid regulation…neither overturned by a competent authority, nor annulled, modified or cancelled. The operators must take steps to prepare themselves to implement this,” TRAI Chairman R.S. Sharma told reporters on Thursday, post a meeting between the industry representatives and TRAI.

The meeting was attended by Bharti Airtel India MD and CEO Gopal Vittal, Vodafone India MD and CEO Sunil Sood, Idea Cellular MD and CEO Himanshu Kapania, Reliance Jio Infocomm MD Sanjay Mashruwala and MTNL Director Sunil Kumar, besides COAI DG Rajan S. Mathews and AUSPI Secretary General Ashok Sud.

The TRAI Chairman said: “An impression is being created that the authority has imposed this regulation without considering the technical feasibility of its operation. Before issuing regulation, the authority has considered all aspects of the matter, including technical feasibility.”

He, however, added that the authority will examine legally if it can review the decision or not and then decide the course of action. The decision, he said, will be conveyed to the operators within two weeks.

“…The operators have assured us to improve their performance. We are not here to only criticise them, but help them improve quality of service,” Mr. Sharma said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Mathews said the industry body will wait for two weeks for a TRAI response on their letter and would then take a call on whether to move TDSAT.

In today’s meeting, the results of drive tests conducted by the authority recently were also discussed. The first independent drive test was carried out in Delhi and Mumbai in June and July, 2015, in which most service providers failing to meet quality of service norms. A repeat drive test was undertaken to assess the improvement, however, the regulator said no significant improvement was seen.

TRAI said it will carry out a repeat drive test in December, 2015 in major cities to assess the improvement in the quality of service. In these drive tests additional areas will also be included. TRAI officers will also have fortnightly meetings to monitor the situation.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 9:19:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/Industry/call-drop-penalty-to-stay-for-now-says-trai-chief/article7819456.ece

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