Early this year, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh flagged off one of telecom industry's most popular service, that of mobile number portability (MNP). The service gained precedence owing to its sheer utility, and more importantly because it gave the average user the freedom to pick the offer that suited them best without having to worry about losing their existing number.
MNP woes! (Image credit: Getty Images)
How much ever enticing this may look on paper, we've learnt that the same isn't being implemented in practice, forcing the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to take the matter into their own hands, according to a report in The Economic Times. Major mobile service providers operating in the India, like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular, Loop, Reliance have been brought under the TRAI scanner for having allegedly violated the MNP guidelines. Those being found guilty of rejecting mobile number portability requests on unexplained grounds have been issued showcause notices by TRAI. Milind Deora, Minister of State for Communications and IT, reportedly in a statement to the Lok Sabha stated that, “TRAI has received a number of complaints regarding rejection of mobile number portability (MNP) requests by mobile companies.“
Now, in a bid to keep a check on MNP rejections, TRAI has begun issuing direction to all service providers in the country with a more simplified version of 'Unique Porting Code', so that chances of making an error go low.
Only recently, we also reported that TRAI had noticed irregularities in the way Vodafone handled the MNP requests it received. While Vodafone cited contractual obligations as its reason for rejecting MNP requests, it was soon learnt that TRAI had certain rules for “contractual obligations”. According to TRAI, unless the amount of subscriber dues exceeded Rs.10, telecom operators cannot refuse the consumer asking for number porting.
Bharti Airtel, contractual obligations, Idea Cellular, Loop Mobile, Mobile number portability, Mobile services, Reliance, showcause notice, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, TRAI, Unique Porting Code, Vodafone