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Trai finds congestion at PoIs, asks incumbents to meet norms

Trai finds congestion at PoIs, asks incumbents to meet norms

Intervening into the ongoing spat between Reliance Jio and incumbent operators over failed calls, telecom regulator TRAI has directed existing players to meet quality of service norms and furnish a compliance report by October 17.

“PoI congestion has resulted into large failure of inter-operator calls affecting the interest of the consumers at large and, therefore, to protect the interest of the consumers, the Authority has decided to issue this direction,” TRAI said in a statement.

Reliance Jio, which launched its services last month, is offering free voice calls for life and 4G mobile broadband services free till December 31.

The Mukesh Ambani-led company had approached the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India complaining of a high rate of call failures, alleging that incumbent operators were not providing enough Points of Interconnection (PoIs).

Existing operators had requested Trai to find a way to curb the “massive asymmetric traffic” and ensure that receiving networks are not “abused by tsunami of free traffic” from Reliance Jio.

They had claimed that they are incurring increasing costs due to high level of asymmetric traffic coming in from the Jio network.

TRAI had issued showcause notices to operators on September 27 for call drops that were far exceeding the norm.

Three days later, the Authority also met CEOs of certain operators on the issue.

It also asked mobile operators, including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Reliance Jio, to submit a daily call traffic data to enable it to look at the matter.

“…on perusal of the information furnished by the TSPs, the Authority has prima facie noted that in many of the License Service Areas (LSAs), the percentage of failed call attempts during busy hour with RJIL is exorbitantly high,” TRAI said.

It added that this is in contravention of the service quality norms and also violates the relevant provisions of the license.

As per the quality of service rules pertaining to interconnection, not more than five out of every 1,000 calls can fail.

Disclosure: Network 18, which publishes, is a part of the Reliance Group.