In a bid to strengthen its consumer redressal mechanism, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has released draft amendment regulations to the telecom consumer complaint redressal regulations issued in January 2012.
The organization notes that these regulations were proposed after it received several representations from consumer organizations to improve the existing consumer redressal mechanism. The issues raised include lack of awareness of the appellate authority, the appeal procedure and the accessibility of complaint centers. TRAI has now invited written and electronic comments from various stakeholders until August 14, 2013.
Highlights of new proposed regulations
– Filing Complaints Over SMS & Email: Allowing consumers to file complaints against a service provider over SMS, email and physical letters in addition to the existing voice calls and physical complaint centers.
– After the appeal has been disposed by the appellate authority, the service providers should send details to the appellant via email, SMS or post on the action taken on the complaint.
– Service providers should send details to the consumer on the procedure to file an appeal through the consumer care number, in case he is not satisfied with the complaint solution.
– TRAI has also proposed a provision for consumers to file appeals to appellate authority through the consumer care number of the complaint center.
Telecom Consumers Complaint Monitoring System: In May 2012, TRAI had launched a centralised portal for consumers called Telecom Consumers Complaint Monitoring System (TCCMS), to enable them find contact details of telecom operators’ customer care, general information helplines and their respective appellate authority. However, the portal only helps in connecting consumers with complaint desks of their telecom operators, and is not involved in the process, except for monitoring the status of redressal of complaints filed by consumers.