A number of dealers in Howrah have been selling SIM cards of various service providers without properly authenticating the identity of customers, at a time when the union ministry of telecommunications had decided to take strong action in preventing such irregularities across the country.
The department of telecommunications, under the telecom ministry, had threatened to lodge FIRs against these dealers, retailers and franchises, as well as the buyer, if they violate the mandatory rules for the sale of SIM cards.
Considering the seriousness of the issue, the detective department of Howrah police commissionerate held a meeting with the dealers as well as the representatives of different mobile service providers on July 30, sensitising them on the issue.
Sources at the police commissioner's office said that Nishad Pervez, deputy commissioner of police (head quarters) and Tanmoy Sarkar, assistant commissioner of police (detective department) attended the meeting. Nearly 26 dealers were also present.
“Police have cautioned us to take action if SIM cards are sold without verifying the identity proof of the customers. There might be allegations against some of us who are violating the rules in connection with the sale of SIM cards,” said one of the dealers who attended the meeting.
According to ministry of telecom directives, owners, retailers and franchises of mobile phone shops will have to officially declare that they know the customers to whom they sell the SIM cards. It is crucial that retailers official mention this in the requisite declaration forms that are filled by customers.
The retailer will also have to thoroughly check the forms filled by each customer. They can also lodge FIRs against those customers who are found guilt of providing incorrect information regarding their identity proof.
“We have held a meeting with mobile phone SIM card dealers, and have expressly asked them to check the identity proof of each customer while selling the SIM cards. Police will take necessary action if fake SIM cards are sold to anybody,” Pervez told HT.