COAI Urges TRAI To Offer Subsidy To Operators For Providing Benefits

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All private telecom operators are coming up with new benefits for their postpaid and prepaid users. Apart from offering free talk time, telcos have also extended the validity of prepaid plans. However, now operators are looking for funds and subsidies from the Department of Telecommunication.

COAI Urges TRAI To Offer Subsidy To Operators For Providing Benefits

 

The industry body Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has written to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), where the latter said that if the government wants operators to offer more benefits, then it should offer some subsidy to them. For the unaware, COAI represents all private telecom players such as Bharti Airtel, Vodafone-Idea, and Reliance Jio.

The Delhi based body said that the sector is facing a tough time, and still, they are offering benefits to their users. The firm also intimated that operators are providing connectivity to all, and they have also extended the validity of prepaid plans.

"These efforts are in line with the efforts and decisions of the government to ensure that such citizens can remain connected for essential needs. Even on a conservative basis, the value of such benefits is more than Rs. 600 crore," COAI said.

Furthermore, COAI said that all telecom private players are offering free talk time of Rs. 10, and a recharge facility through ATMs, grocery shops, and pharmacies shops. In fact, Vodafone has also joined hands with Google to help its 2G users. Under this initiative, the operator is offering food and shelter to its users by tracking their locations.

Lastly, COAI asks TRAI to understand the financial situation of the operators. The industry body said, "TRAI is requested to also keep in mind the dire financial situation of our member operators as the sector regulator and the Government. The business viability of our member operators should be given balanced consideration appreciating the fact that millions of the Indian workforce rely directly on the functioning of the telecom operators."

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