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Published On: Wed, Aug 26th, 2020

TRAI issues showcause notice to Vodafone Idea on priority plan

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vodafone_660_220420091316_210820081700KOLKATA: Telecom regulator TRAI has slapped a showcause notice on Vodafone Idea Ltd over its pay-more-for-priority treatment mobile plan, saying the tariff offer “lacks transparency”, is “misleading” and not in compliance with regulatory framework.
TRAI had been probing the Vodafone Idea Ltd (VIL’s) priority plan. The watchdog has issued an elaborate 17-page notice to the telco asking it to explain by August 31, “as to why appropriate action should not be initiated against it for violating the extant regulatory framework by its RedX tariff plan…”.
“The RedX Tariff offer lacks transparency and is misleading and not in compliance with regulatory principles of tariff assessment contained under Telecom Tariff Order, 1999 as amended from time to time.”
Trai though has not sought any explanation from Bharti Airtel NSE -2.68 %, after the Sunil Mittal-led telco modified its Platinum tariff plan by taking out both the faster data speeds and priority network elements from the offer, and filed a revised plan with the sector regulator.
“We’ve pointed out to VIL (Vodafone Idea Ltd NSE -1.11 %) in the show cause notice that its fundamental claim of offering faster data speeds to RedX customers appears to be bogus as the telco has not been able to prove in the first place to the authority’s technical team that it is actually possible to offer the promised faster data speeds to RedX consumers,” a senior Trai official told.
Last week, Trai sought more time from the TDSAT to conclude its ongoing inquiry into whether RedX and Platinum tariffs degraded the quality of services of VIL and Airtel users on other non-premium offers. The appellate tribunal has granted Trai three weeks and will hear the matter on September 10.(With PTI Inputs ).

 

 

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