On tight leash: Trai to fine telcos Rs 5,000 for every pesky call

New Delhi:Pesky callers beware. If you are not registered as tele-marketers but still continue making unsolicited calls to sell your insurance policies and banks loans, telecom regulator TRAI will disconnect all telecom resources allotted to you and also blacklist you.

The regulator has also directed every access provider to submit, by the 15th of every month, the details of all bulk connections provided by it to the subscriber during the previous calendar month.

To tighten the noose further, TRAI has also put some of the onus of pesky calls on the access provider. It has said if any unsolicited commercial communication has been sent by a subscriber who is not registered with it as telemarketer, the originating access provider of such subscriber shall be liable to pay up to Rs 5,000 for every such complaint.



TRAI has issued directions to this effect which will come info force when the Government issues a formal notification.

A recent reply in Parliament highlights how the menace of pesky calls has increased despite several regulations issued by TRAI in the past. This reply stated that on an average 46,402 complaints are received per month by the service providers regarding the pesky calls and messages. Between August 5, 2012 and August 4, 2013, a total of 5,56,834 complaints were received.

In November last year, TRAI had asked service providers to put in place a comprehensive mechanism which will ensure that no commercial SMSes are sent having same or similar characters or variants from any source or number.

It had also banned service providers from offering concessional rates for SMSes over 100 from the same number. Service providers were also asked to obtain an undertaking from the subscriber that the SIM purchased shall not be used for telemarketing purposes.

Then in May this year, service providers were told that when they receive their first complaint about unsolicited calls, they should disconnect telephone numbers from which such a call has originated. Further, the name and address of that telephone subscriber shall then be shared with all other service providers. No service provider will provide any telecom resource in that name and address for a period of two years.

The written reply in Parliament noted that about 3 lakh telephone connections of un-registered telemarketers have been disconnected by the access service providers and the name and address of 25,295 such subscribers have been put into the blacklist.

But will all these measures be enough to deter a determined insurance agent or that guy who has been asked to sell you a loan?

Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 22:48 PM

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