Telecom Operators To Stop Offering Additional Benefits To Prepaid Users During Lockdown


Telecom operators are spending a lot of money on offering benefits to customers. In fact, the industry body COAI suggested that operators are offering benefits worth Rs. 600 crore. Now, it has been reported that telecom operators might not offer or extend these benefits as recharge options are available in all orange and green zones.

Telecom Operators To Stop Offering Additional Benefits To Users


"With the opening up of the mobile retail recharge locations in each state and with the activation of the Common Service Centres in the rural areas, we believe the needs of both rural and urban customers are addressed," Rajan Mathews, director-general of Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) was quoted by Economic Times as saying.

Mathews said, "This is in addition to staffing at kiranas, medical stores, ATMs, and other locations that are also available for recharging. Operators believe this presently addresses the needs of customers."

List Of All Benefits That Telecom Operators Are Offering During Lockdown

The development comes after Vodafone announced that it is offering recharge services at kirana and medical stores in Uttar Pradesh (West). The telecom operator has tied with 6,500 kirana and medical shops, and now it is planning to expand its reach to other outlets as well.

In addition, telecom operators, such as Airtel, Vodafone-Idea, and Reliance Jio have joined hands with ATMs and pharmacy shops, so that they can offer a recharge facility to 70 to 100 million customers. Besides, operators have launched initiatives where they are offering cashback if someone helps others in recharging their prepaid numbers. Under this initiative, telcos are providing four to six percent cash back.

Apart from that, operators have announced free talk time of Rs. 10 for low-income groups, while Reliance Jio gave free talk time to its JioPhone users. "Operators have not communicated any new initiatives to COAI. MHA has given special instructions for mobile retail recharge locations to be treated as part of 'telecom essential services' and hence to be opened in each state," Rajan Mathews added.


Notably, MHA has considered telecom services are under an essential item list that's why operators have launched benefits at the beginning of the lockdown. The telecom operators are also working with local bodies or governments to help customers.

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