TRAI fines 13 telecom operators for non-compliance of pesky call, SMS regulations

TRAI fines 13 telecom operators for non-compliance of pesky call, SMS regulations

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has imposed a total fine of Rs. 5.04 crores on 13 telecom operators for non-compliance with regulations related to unsolicited commercial communications, the Parliament was informed on Wednesday.

TRAI had laid down a revised framework for addressing unsolicited commercial communications (UCC), and these regulations came into effect from September 27, 2011, Minister of State for Communications and IT Milind Deora said in a written reply to Lok Sabha.

He added the regulator has also issued various amendments to these regulations to make the framework more effective.

"In accordance with the provisions of this regulation, TRAI has imposed financial disincentive of Rs. 5,04,06,000 till date on the service providers," Deora said.

He said financial disincentive was imposed on Bharti Airtel, Aircel, Vodafone Essar, Idea Cellular, Reliance Communications, Tata Teleservices, Unitech Wireless, Videocon Telecommunications, Sistema Shyam Teleservices, BSNL, MTNL, Quadrant Televentures and Loop Telecom.

"Out of this amount, Rs. 25,000 has been levied on MTNL as financial disincentive for violation of the regulations," Deora said.

He said TRAI's regulatory interventions have largely tempered the menace of UCC, however, UCC (SMSes or calls) from persons not registered as telemarketers with TRAI has not ceased.

"Such individuals deliberately masquerade themselves as "normal subscribers" even though their primary purpose for obtaining telecom resources is for telemarketing activities," he added.

He said TRAI has disconnected 4,17,898 telephone connections of unregistered telemarketers from September 27, 2011 to October 31, 2013.

"260 notices have been sent to registered telemarketers with deduction in their security deposit from September 27, 2011 to October 31, 2013," he added.

Deora said 17 registered telemarketers have been blacklisted from September 27, 2011 to October 31, 2013 whereas 1,45,696 unregistered telemarketers have been blacklisted in the two years till October 31, 2013.

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