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TRAI chides cellular operators

Operators were taking a plea of delay in interconnectivity and spectrum related issues as a cause for poor quality, TRAI said.

business Updated: Jan 15, 2006 14:34 IST

Taking serious note of the deteriorating quality of mobile services throughout the country, telecom regulator TRAI has pulled up Cellular Operators Association of India.

Operators were taking a plea of delay in interconnectivity and spectrum related issues as a cause for poor quality, TRAI said.

It is understood that operators have not taken any steps for reducing the time period in the interconnection agreements for provision of interconnection either through mutual discussions or through legal measures, TRAI said in a strongly worded letter to COAI.

TRAI's decision to question the operators on QoS assumes importance especially since the tariffs of mobile services have been continuously falling down while QoS not adhering to the set benchmarks may ultimately prove disastrous for the industry as a whole.

TRAI had issued a directive to all operators in November last year to ensure that the Quality of Service in their networks should be within the prescribed benchmarks by December 31, 2005.

COAI denied allegations levied by TRAI and asked TRAI to withdraw its directive as certain facts need to be verified as mentioned in the regulator's letter.

The service providers have also not taken any legal measure in cases where the provision of interconnection has been delayed badly.

Under such circumstances it is not expedient for the service providers to take the plea that unless the interconnection matters are resolved they should not be directed to ensure QoS.

First Published: Jan 15, 2006 14:34 IST