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The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has initiated the pre-consultation process to implement mobile number portability across the nation. This service will allow users to retain their original number even in the event of shifting from one place to another. In the current scenario, only within a particular service area can mobile number portability be availed by users. When the nation-wide implementation happens, users can keep their numbers even if they shift places across the country.
TRAI said in a statement that the authority is asking for the views of the stakeholders in the process regarding various issues through the pre-consultation process. Some of the matters that the regulator has sought advice are on the method that needs to be adopted for implementing full MNP, amendments required in the existing regulations as well as the method for porting a number between service areas. The interested parties are required to comment on these matters by March 7. According to TRAI, there are only 2 MNP service providers which cater to the 22 service areas.
TRAI further stated that in order to implement nation-wide MNP a number of issues will have to be sorted out. Full MNP implies recipient operator will have to accept porting request from other service areas as well. The issues such as porting request processing, charging, testing, routing etc. will need to be addressed. Connectivity between the 2 MNP providers will also be required.
At present, as per the existing regulations for mobile number portability, the time period for porting a number is fifteen working days in the North East, Assam and Jammu and Kashmir. For all the other service areas, it takes only seven working days.