Airtel and Aircel Resolve SMS Dispute Prior to Final Verdict of Supreme Court

By: Gizbot Bureau

Indian mobile operators seem to be engaged more in legal battles now a day. Only few days back a tribunal had ordered both Aircel and Tata to pay SMS termination charges of 5ps per message to Vodafone. Now Airtel and Aircel have restored their SMS link in Tamil Nadu following a directive from the Supreme Court. It may be recalled that the SMS links between these two major operators in Tamil Nadu was disconnected for about a month following dispute over the interconnect charges.

Airtel was the first one to block Aircel's SMS connectivity alleging that its network is being spammed which is leading to poor quality of service and frequent network drop outs. Airtel in response to this also terminated Airtel's SMS link. There is also a dispute existing between the players on account of payment of SMS termination charges. Airtel had demanded 10ps per message as termination fee, which is being challenged by Aircel.

Airtel and Aircel Resolve SMS Dispute Prior to Final Verdict

Aircel initially raised this in the TDSAT, but when its plea was rejected, they moved to Supreme Court. Though the final verdict is not out, Supreme court had given an interim order to both parties to restore their SMS links and even asked Aircel to pay full amount as per the invoice raised by Airtel for the time being and it will be refunded with interest if the final verdict goes in their favor. Following this, Airtel and Aircel have now restored SMS interconnection links much to the relief of millions of subscribers in Tamil Nadu. Both the companies have however declined to comment further on this interim order from the Supreme Court.

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