Telecom Companies Ask TRAI To Retain 50 Paise Per Spam SMS Rule

Telecom Companies  Ask TRAI To Retain 50 Paise Per Spam SMS Rule

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) regime of 50 paise per spam SMS will eliminate unwanted messages from unregistered telemarketers.

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Telecom operators Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, Vodafone Idea and Tata Communications have urged TRAI to continue the 50 paise per spam SMS rule to eliminate spam messages from telemarketers who are not registered. The regulator rolled out the regime back in 2012 and mandated that Rs 50 paise per SMS will be charged after 100 SMS per day and per SIM.

Telecom operators addressed their views in a virtual open house discussion which was conducted by TRAI amid the virus outbreak and lockdown period. According to these telcos,  54th Amendment of Telecom Tariff Order will burn the bridges for telemarketers who have not been registered, and it will also discourage unsolicited commercial communication (UCC).

Since the present rule lacks enough disincentives to push back the unregistered telemarketers, TRAI must not lift the regime. Rajan Mathews, who is the director general of COAI, stated that financial disincentive must be present for the unregistered telemarketers who are trying to break into the system and annoy the users with spam messages.

The authority stated that even the 50 paise per spam SMS regime is being followed, customers are still complaining about the unsolicited commercial communication. To curb the spam traffic by unregistered telemarketers, TRAI already asked telcos to follow the DLT technology. Messaging Services director Anurag Aggarwal marked that TRAI must note lift the disincentive of 50 paise per SMS regime as DLT technology is still under working and no other financial disincentive is present to curb the spam traffic from, uninvited telemarketers.

Railways are facing financial distress from the restriction as they are paying a massive amount of Rs 2 crore for non-commercial SMSes. Railway Department’s service provider is charging 50 paise per SMS related to security and safety purpose. Nearly, 7,500 SIMS used by Railways for non-commercial purposes are paying 50 paise per SMS to providers.

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