Telcos upset over the penalties in the new MNP recommendations issued by TRAI

Telecom companies have expressed their dismay over the penalties issued over the noncompliance of the new Mobile number portability (MNP) guidelines given by TRAI on Tuesday. According to the new recommendations, TRAI has introduced two sets of financial disincentives for the telcos if they failed in processing the porting requests as per the given guidelines. TRAI’s recommendations to set these stiff penalties have caused alarm among the Phone companies.

“Penalties are extremely blunt instruments to ensure MNP compliance, and rather a partnered approach with Trai to ensure our mutual goals are met and difficulties ironed out would be the preferred approach,” said Rajan Mathews, director general of the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), which represents Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio Infocomm.

Demand for porting requests, he said, have peaked after the closure of (fringe layers) Aircel, Telenor India and Reliance Communications amid heavy demand from customers of these companies to move to other operators.

Mathews stressed that telcos, on their part, are doing their best “to ensure customers are not inconvenienced during the MNP process and are working to put appropriate systems and infrastructure in place to comply”.

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