June 29, 2017

TRAI firm on Rs 3050 cr penalty on telcos

28 May 2017, 02:18 | Candice Butler

Govt suffered Rs 400 cr revenue shortfall on breach of license conditions by Airtel, Vodafone, says Jio

The telecom department had on Wednesday asked Trai on Wednesday to reconsider the penalty order on quality of sevice issue

Trai said it took cognisance of all the submissions of Airtel, Vodafone and Idea including the efforts made by them but the steps taken were insufficient to bring down the PoI congestion to the desired level.

New telecom entrant Reliance Jio has said that the government suffered a revenue shortfall of over Rs 400 crore in FY17 on account of violation of license conditions by the incumbent telcos. Trai also rejected DoT's point that the recommendations may not stand legal scrutiny, saying that these were framed only after observing continued violation of quality of service norms and licence conditions, and after show-cause notices were served and the views of the erring telcos taken on board. Airtel led the industry table with 2.85 million additions followed by Vodafone (0.76 million) and Idea at 0.68 million subscribers during April.

In a letter to Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Jio, owned by billionaire Mukesh Ambani, said incumbent telcos paid advanced license fee for Q4 on the basis of estimated adjusted gross revenue (AGR) for the quarter, which is much lower, Business Standard reported.

Trai recommended penalties of Rs 1,050 crore each on Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India, and Rs 950 crore on Idea Cellular in October past year, on the grounds that the carriers violated licence norms by denying adequate PoIs - needed for completing calls from one carrier to another - to Jio, adding that their actions appeared to be aimed at stifling competition, were anti-consumer and against the public interest. "On the contrary, the testing can not be completed unless sufficient PoIs are provided", it said.

In February this year, the TC asked Trai to clarify almost a dozen points, including whether the stipulated 90-day period was given to the three telcos for providing PoIs to the newcomer.

An Airtel spokesperson said his company disagreed with Trai's observations, adding the penalty was recommended on the basis of an incorrect assessment of the situation on ground.

England v South Africa, 2nd ODI
That became 10 off 10 balls when David Miller (71 not out) struck Jake Ball for a six and a four off successive deliveries. Stokes hoisted both Phehlukwayo and Chris Morris high over deep midwicket for sixes.

Hong Kong Based financial services provider UBS AG has released its telecom report for the month of March, and have stated that Jio's aggressive and fast growth mode has slowed down.

Stating that it is mandated by law to ensure effective interconnection and quality of service to the consumers, Trai said non-compliance of terms and conditions of the licence warrants recommendations for the revocation of the licence.

It said there was no provision in the licence or TRAI Regulation "to deny/delay provisioning of PoIs during the test phase". Now, the recommendations will go back to the panel, which will take a final call.

"In this context, the denial and delay in providing PoIs when the quality of service (QoS) parameters were not being met can not be explained in any other manner but wilful".

The authority said it had been monitoring the PoI congestion and call failure data for over three months.

As per Trai's recommendation, the penalty for Airtel and Vodafone worked out to about Rs 1,050 crore each, while in case of Idea Cellular stood at about Rs 950 crore.

Other News

Trending Now

35 detained in WV as part of 10-day ICE sweep
ICE officials in Southern California arrested almost 200 persons Thursday, most of whom had prior criminal convictions. Arrests were made in the counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, Orange, Ventura and Santa Barbara.

Lib Dems plan to 'sack' Southern Rail, says Lewes candidate
Mr Farron, who is due to launch his party's manifesto on Wednesday evening, spent the morning visiting Holland Park School in west London.

In updated count, NDP lead by 101 votes in Courtenay-Comox
Elections BC has been updating its website periodically as more absentee ballots are counted in ridings across the province. Across the province, the Liberals' lead over the NDP has dropped to 2,612 votes, or 0.13 per cent of the ballots.

Computer beats Chinese champion in ancient board game of go
Go may not be the endgame, but it's a beguiling, engrossing context for these conversations to be held in. Some calculate that there are 10 to the 360th power possible go positions, far more than chess or shogi.

Former FBI Director James Comey agrees to testify before Senate Intel Committee
The document was read to Times reporters by one USA official and was confirmed by a second official. Which, actually, might have been a semi-defensible reason to let Comey go.

DJI announces the $499 Spark, a compact hand-controlled drone
The two new modes of shooting; Shallow focus and Pano mode make the whole flying experience more enjoyable and interesting too. When it comes time to land, tapping the Spark's "Return to Home" button brings the aircraft back to its departure point.

Monaco Have Rejected An Astronomical Real Madrid Bid For Kylian Mbappe
With a World Cup only a year away Mbappe, who has two caps for France, may well be tempted to stay at Monaco and help them defend their title.

Supreme Court strikes down North Carolina gerrymandering
Two decades ago, Democrats used the law to demand so-called "majority-minority" districts. This kind of "racial gerrymandering" is what the court seems to have no problem with.

China and ASEAN Near A Code of Conduct?
The Philippine government maintained that it owns the territory where Filipino troops and villagers have lived for decades. Besides China's territorial claims in the area, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, the Philippines and Taiwan have rival claims.

Senate panel backs bill to authorize new sanctions on Iran
The Trump administration has been considering whether to formally designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization. A number of other officials on the board have argued against the sanctions legislation.