Benefits to consumer not liked by cellular operators: Govt
Govt has informed SC that tariff reduction in telecom services was not to the liking of cellular operators.business Updated: Dec 03, 2003 20:16 IST
Terming the new unified licence regime to be in the interest of the consumers, the Centre has informed the Supreme Court that tariff reduction in telecom services fuelled by competition was not to the liking of cellular operators.
Replying to a petition filed by Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) challenging WLL services, the Government said, "Competition in telecom sector has greatly helped consumers. Tariffs have fallen from Rs 16 per minute to Re 1 per minute. Long distance tariffs have seen a reduction of more than 60 per cent."
"Obviously this is not to the liking of the cellular operators," the Government said adding "Consumers cannot be allowed to be squeezed or blackmailed by any of the operators."
Accusing the cellular operators of being party to the consultation process before notification of the unified licence regime, the Centre said that they did not choose to challenge it during the stages of formulation and initiation.
It said "the cellular operators having chosen to ignore developments and having not challenged TRAI recommendations before the appropriate forum, cannot be permitted to use these proceedings to convert the Supreme Court into a primary tribunal examining the decisions on facts and beyond the scope of appellate jurisidiction under TRAI Act."