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TDSAT Stays TRAI Directive To Remove 90-Day MNP Period For Select Telcos

The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has stayed Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)’s directive to remove the 90-day period for Mobile Number Portability (MNP) service for the subscribers of telecom operators whose licenses were cancelled, as part of 122 licenses cancelled by the Supreme Court in February this year, reports PTI (via The Economic Times)

This judgment follows a petition from Unitech Wireless and Sistema Shyam Tele Services (SSTL), which operates in the country as Uninor and MTS respectively, after TRAI had issued a directive last month to remove the mandatory 90 day period for MNP service for subscribers of telecom operators whose licenses were quashed by the Supreme court.

Unitech Wireless and SSTL had claimed that this directive creates a distinction between operators whose licenses were not cancelled and those whose licenses were cancelled, in spite of carrying out its operations in full-fledged manner in the country. It also stated that this directive will enable other operators to poach their subscribers and claimed that other operators have been sending text messages to their subscribers urging them to port to their network.

In its judgement, TDSAT said this directive will cause serious damage to the affected operators which cannot be compensated on monetary terms and they will stand to lose a large number of customers, in case they plan to continue their operations in India, take part in the forthcoming 2G spectrum auction and successfully bid for licenses. It also added that TRAI cannot differentiate between these operators and it cannot curtail the rights of these affected operators to compete with other operators.

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