After setting up new guidelines for mobile banking, TRAI plans to put into affect some processing fee for mobile recharge vouchers as well. According to the latest report, telecom regular TRAI has now approved a hike for all mobile recharge coupons (top-up vouchers) which are priced more than 20. However, there won’t be any processing fee for vouchers priced below 20.
Why extra charges on SMS during special occasions
It is after two years that TRAI has cleared an amendment made to the Telecom Tariff Order of an increase of 50 percent in the charge. “Authority has decided to increase the ceiling on Processing Fee on Top up vouchers to 3 from 2 in respect of Top up vouchers having maximum retail price (MRP) of 20 and above and to continue with the existing ceiling of 2 in respect of top up vouchers having MRP of less than 20,” TRAI said in TTO.
So, obviously, this new change is set to affect about 90 percent pre-paid users and the processing fee will be a part of the MRP of the recharge coupon purchased. However, TRAI has also said that most service providers do not have top up vouchers below 20 and also ordered these service providers to make available at least one top up voucher worth 10. “With a view to protect the interests of users, the Authority mandates that every service provider shall offer and make available to the consumer at least one top up voucher, of denomination of 10,” TRAI said.
This order follows the written submission by telecom industry body COAI and AUSPI to the Telecom regulatory Authority of India. It states that there have been inflationary pressures over the last three years, from the time TRAI prescribed the ceiling of 2. COAI says that there have been a rising cost of services with salary hikes and wages, increased diesel cost and transportation. TRAI has declared that there wouldn’t be any processing fee for top ups below 20 in order to save interest of low usage subscribers.
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