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Public debate on lifetime validity

The telecom watchdog has initiated a public debate on a slew of ?lifetime? tariff plans announced by the mobile telecom operators.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2006 01:26 IST

The telecom watchdog has initiated a public debate on a slew of ‘lifetime’ tariff plans announced by the mobile telecom operators.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has raised a number of issues that could create problems due to these tariff plans both for operators and the consumers.

The impact on network due to sudden growth of subscribers and consequent effect on quality of service, the exit option for the consumer if they do not like it at some time of their life and consistency of the tariff are a few issue that the regulator plans to sort out through public discussion.

The TRAI on Monday initiated a consultation process on tariff plans with ‘lifetime validity’ by issuing a consultation paper. The last date for submission of comments by stakeholders is January 31, 2006. In the last few months, mobile operators have marketed and offered tariff schemes promising lifetime validity (with free incoming calls). The regulator is of the opinion that there are some issues arising out of these plans and hence it needs to consult the consumers, service providers and all other interested parties about the impact of such long-term plans with lifetime validity.

A TRAI member Dr D.P.S. Seth said, “The Act provides that the regulator must guard the interest of service provider, consumer and orderly growth of telecom sector. The tariff plans (lifetime validity) were submitted by operators to us and while examining them we felt that there were a few issue that needed response from all stakeholders, hence the consultation process.”

First Published: Jan 17, 2006 01:26 IST