Airtel, Vodafone, Idea fined upto Rs.3,050 crores by TRAI

Reliance to expand its space in the market has announced Jio with a bundle of offers. Though they are very much pretty offers for the customer and the RCOM, they have became heavy to bear for other service providers in India.

Jio offers 4G Data calling named as “VoLTE”. It is offered for free to any network. Here lies the main problem. For providing this service between the different networks sufficient Points-of-Interconnection (PoI) should be set up. This is a huge investment based program for the other telecom operators. Hence, they did not do so.

The lack of PoI has made the VoLTE calling a failure for Reliance Jio. When a Reliance caller makes a Data call, the customer is facing either low quality or call drops problem.

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In this regard, RCOM has complained against Bharati AirTel, Vodafone India, Idea Cellular for deliberately neglecting the set up of PoIs, to India’s telecom regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

On hearing the arguments from all the providers, TRAI decided to recommend Department of Telecommunication (DOT) to levy a penalty of approximately Rs. 3,050 crore for AirTel, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular. This amount is a combined total for all the three.

AirTel and Vodafone has been penalized in about 21 circles of telecom services provided. AirTel has to pay 50 crores per circle which comes to Rs.1,050 crores. The same is the case with the Vodafone case. Idea cellular has been penalized in 19 circles. It amounted to Rs.950 crores.

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This is officially conveyed to the respective service providers in writing. The letter issued by TRAI also stated that though there is a law to cancel the licenses, keeping in view of customer’s inconvenience, only penalty have been levied.