TRAI asks telcos to pay users for call drops, Rs 2 lakh fine for poor service

TRAI has ordered telecom companies to compensate consumers for call drops from January 1 2016 and further raised the fine for shoddy service quality to Rs 2 lakh. The penalty for dropped calls is set at Rs 1 per incidence.

TRAI outlined the rules of the new call drop compensation scheme in a statement. According to its mandate, the punishment will be restricted to three occurrences of the problem in a day. The network provider is also supposed to send an SMS or USSD to the customer within 4 hours of the issue taking place.

Man Holding A Phone

The message will contain information about the amount credited to their account. In the case of postpaid users, telecom companies are to compensate them in their next bill. As per TRAI, call drops are defined as voice calls which are interrupted after establishing a successful connection.

TRAI stated that it would keep an eye on operators to see if they followed the new ruling and what measures they take to reduce the problem. It has additionally released details about its recent call drop test drive in Mumbai and Delhi. The regulatory body found service providers in both cities were not meeting the required benchmarks.

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Keeping this in mind, TRAI has introduced a set of financial disincentives for poor quality of service. Providers will now have to pay Rs 1 lakh for the first violation, Rs 1.5 lakh for the second, and Rs 2 lakh for any subsequent ones. This system covers problems such as network congestion, call drops, lack of mobile towers and refunds.

TRAI plans to undertake a review of the call drop situation in 6 months if it deems the move necessary. It thinks introducing a compensation model will provide relief to customers and encourage telecom operators to improve their service quality.