TRAI preparing customer supportive rules

TRAI is preparing a set of customer supportive rules which telecom operators will have to follow or face action, reports M Rajendran.

india Updated: Nov 15, 2006 20:55 IST

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is preparing a set of customer supportive rules which telecom operators will have to follow or face action.

The rules will soon be available in docket form, or may be put up by the TRAI on its website. They will relate to customers' rights regarding billing and connectivity and will have to be made known to every customer who takes a connection. Confirming that the rules had a customer oriented thrust, TRAI chairman Nripendra Misra however refused to divulge any details.

However, sources in TRAI said, that the departments that were currently examining matters like the rights available under the Right to Information Act (RTI), and listening to consumer advisory groups about common complaints of consumers. They revealed that the general complaints division in TRAI will be merged with quality of services (QoS) division, to form an omnibus division on ‘Consumer Interest and Quality of Services'.

A senior TRAI official told Hindustan Times, “The decision will be announced this week or early next week.”

The TRAI has also decided to come down heavily on the unsolicited calls made by telemarketing companies. The exact means of doing so will be discussed from Monday with the release of a consultation paper on the subject, which will look into how the bulk of such calls can be minimised. The recommendations will make it easier for a subscriber to avoid getting such calls, and ensure they do not impose any significant costs on subscribers or service providers.

Telemarketing will not be banned, but the TRAI will provide a mechanism for a subscriber to stop unwanted commercial communications to her or his telephone.
The consultation paper will also look at the experiences of the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland and United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand, in dealing with such calls.

First Published: Nov 15, 2006 20:55 IST