DoT slaps ₹3,050 crore penalty on Airtel, VIL; Airtel to approach court

In October 2016, TRAI had recommended imposing a total penalty of ₹3,050 crore on Airtel, Vodafone and Idea (now merged) for allegedly denying inter-connectivity to Reliance Jio.

Published - October 01, 2021 01:52 pm IST - New Delhi

DoT took the move based on sector regulator TRAI's recommendation five years ago.

DoT took the move based on sector regulator TRAI's recommendation five years ago.

The Department of Telecom (DoT) has slapped a penalty of ₹2,000 crore on Vodafone Idea and ₹ 1,050 crore on Bharti Airtel based on sector regulator TRAI's recommendation five years ago, according to sources.

The DoT has given three weeks time to the telecom operators to pay the penalty, a source said while sharing the content of the demand notice served to the companies on Thursday.

When contacted Bharti Airtel spokesperson said, “We are deeply disappointed with the arbitrary and unfair demand based on TRAI recommendations of 2016 relating to provisions of point of interconnect to a new operator. These allegations were frivolous and motivated.”

“Bharti Airtel takes pride in maintaining high standards of compliance and has always followed the law of the land. We will challenge the demand and pursue the legal options available to us.”

No immediate comments were received from Vodafone Idea.

In October 2016, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) had recommended imposing a total penalty of ₹3,050 crore on Airtel, Vodafone and Idea (now merged) for allegedly denying inter-connectivity to Reliance Jio.

The regulator had, at that time, stopped short of recommending cancellation of their telecom licences saying it may lead to significant consumer inconvenience.

TRAI’s recommendation had come on a complaint by Reliance Jio that over 75% of calls on its network were failing as incumbents were not releasing sufficient numbers of points of interface (PoIs).

The Digital Communications Commission, the telecom department's apex decision-making body, approved the cumulative penalty in July 2019.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.