The national body Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI) has petitioned Competition Commission of India (CCI) on the delay that has dogged the legalisation of Internet Telephony in India, Business Standard reports. Currently, Internet Telephony is not permitted to terminate on a phone line (landlines, mobiles). Despite a recommendation by the Indian regulator TRAI, the government has not made VoIP operational. A TRAI letter to the Department of Telecom states, "Internet telephony may be permitted to ISPs with permission to provide Internet telephony calls to PSTN/PLMN and vice-versa within country and necessary amendments made in the license provisions." Yet the government has held back from the decision, causing ISPAI to allege that it is "favouring mobile operators and preventing fair competition". Rajesh Chharia, President of ISPAI, told Medianama, "DoT is indulging in favouritsm and does not believe that growth should also include broadband and Internet in the country, not just mobile." Too Late? ISPAI's direction is that Internet Telephony will be the shot in the arm for India's Internet growth, which has been sagging with poor usage and infrastructure for years now. Its appeal is that this would be the "killer application" that would increase the spread of broadband into rural areas, something which the government has been talking about for years. What makes Internet telephony a "killer app" is its cost advantage - ISPs planned to make a PC-to-phone call or a phone-to-phone call cheaper than a conventional phone call - which in India can be taken as…
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