TRAI Asks Telcos Not To Provide Differential Tariffs To Users: Here's Why


The telecom regulator TRAI has come up with new norms for the telecom sector. Under these new norms, all telecom operators and their channel partners are not allowed to offer differential tariffs to lure customers via mobile number portability (MNP).

TRAI Asks Telcos Not To Provide Differential Tariffs To Users

TRAI New Direction For Tariff Plans

According to TRAI differential tariffs are discriminatory and violate pricing rules. The new direction said that all telecom operators, channel partners, third-party apps, and distributors to offer those plans or packs that have been registered with them.

"All tariff offers (must) comply with extant TRAI regulations, directions, orders, (especially) where the TSP's name, the brand is used for marketing/offering/selling products and services," the regulator said in its directive to telcos.

In its direction, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India claimed channel partners might have given benefits to the users via these tariffs. But, telecom operators need to understand that distributors, channel partners, third-party apps, and retailers do not have a license to do so.

"The direction is not in response to complaints by any specific operator, but to numerous complaints lodged by all three telcos against each other for coming up with discriminatory MNP-specific offers to grab consumers," a senior TRAI official was quoted by ET.

In addition, the telecom regulator said that MNP related offers violate clause 10 of TTO- 1999. According to TT0 -1999 norms for providing different tariffs to users via MNP is not valid. Besides, the motive to attract users from other telecom operators is discriminatory.

Airtel And Reliance Jio Rules Via MNP

It is worth noting that Airtel and Reliance Jio are trying their best to attract users from Vodafone-Idea. Both telecom operators have come up with several strategies to increase their user base from India's third-largest telecom operator Vodafone-Idea through MNP.


Similarly, brokerage firm BNP said that Reliance Jio and Airtel have become aggressive in acquiring Vodafone-Idea customers via the same route.

Notably, Airtel is also planning to join hands with PepsiCo, where all products of the latter will have the branding of the upcoming offer. Under the same offer, users will get data up to 2GB with the purchase of Kurkure, Lays, and more. These kinds of strategies are expected to help telcos to increase their user base.

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