Telecom operators will have to pay a penalty and immediately de-activate a pre-paid mobile connection if they fail to follow the new norms issued by the government to strengthen the subscriber verification system.
As per the norms, if after March 31, 2007, any subscriber number is found out to be without proper verification, a minimum penalty of Rs 1,000 per violation would be levied on the licensee, Department of Telecom sources said.
The new norms, issued on November 22, follow the meeting by DoT on September 27 this year, where it was decided that the guidelines will be scrupulously adhered to for the purpose of supplementing the existing information.
Further, the authorised person selling SIM cards would have to record in the application form that he has seen the subscriber and verified his documents with the original. In this regard, the operator would have to make the seller aware of his responsibilities and liabilities in the matter.
Pre-paid SIM cards, which make 80 per cent of the mobile connections, would be activated only after the customer acquisition form has been properly filled and copies of documentary proof submitted by the customer.
The authorised seller, who is directly accountable to operators, would have to verify that all the documentary requirement has been completed before activating the SIM card.
Sources said if any discrepancy was found at any stage, the connection would have to be de-activated immediately, but in any case not later than 72 hours.