India to proceed with call drop compensation order

23 Dec 2015

India’s telecom regulator will proceed with the implementation of a controversial rule requiring operators to compensate their customers for call drops, after a court refused to stay the introduction of the penalty.

But the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has agreed not to take any action against operators not complying with the order until January 6, the next hearing date for the operators’ legal action against the order, the Economic Timesreported.

COAI, the body representing India’s GSM industry, teamed up with 21 operators including incumbents Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Reliance to ask the court to quash the order.

TRAI has instructed operators to compensate subscribers 1 rupee ($0.015) per call drop experienced on their network, up to a maximum of 3 rupees per subscriber per day.

Prepaid customers are to receive the compensation in the form of credit while postpaid users are to have the refund reflected in their next bill.

But the operators and COAI have argued that this order is unfair as it is impossible to provide a 100% call drop fee network due to the laws of physics. They have also argued that it is beyond the power of the regulator to impose such a penalty.

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