Bharti Airtel, the country’s leading telecom carrier, said that it will augment the hundreds of points of interconnect (PoI) given to Reliance Jio, as per the bilateral agreement, so that customers are not inconvenienced.
The telco has also urged the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) to find a way to curb the massive asymmetric traffic to ensure that receiving networks are not abused by tsunami of free traffic generated from Jio’s network. It said that IUC is an effective tool in the hands of TRAI to curb the massive asymmetric traffic.
Airtel said that the traffic will inevitably get to a more balanced level and PoIs will be less of an issue, following the commercial charging of services by Reliance Jio, which is expected by Jan 1, 2017.
Airtel also added that it has been fully compliant with all regulatory guidelines and licence conditions in providing points of interconnect (PoI) to other operators. "None of the new operators, who have launched services in the last few years, have faced any PoI related issues with Airtel," It said in the statement.
The Sunil Bharti Mittal-led telecom operator’s comments follows the Trai’s meeting with top telcos and Reliance Jio Infocomm on the points of interconnect (PoI) issue. The regulator also barred officials of industry body COAI from the meeting, which according to media reports, remained inconclusive.
Reliance Jio Infocomm Board Member Mahendra Nahata after this meeting said, "This is fight for justice, fight for customers. Not just Reliance Jio customers or Airtel or Vodafone but for all Indian customers. Jio also sought an adequate amount of points of interconnections (PoIs), which are used to connect calls from one telecom operator to another.
"We have asked for right number of connect, right quantum of interconnection. We have put forth our point of view to Trai. It is for Trai to look into the matter," Jio’s Nahata said.
On the Trai meeting, Airtel said, “We are grateful to the TRAI for enabling a constructive dialogue today on the matter of providing PoIs to Reliance Jio and appreciating all the issues on the table.”
It also asked the TRAI to also engage on the subject of a fair IUC regime and ensure that the practice of pricing is in compliance with the 30th Amendment of the Telecom Tariff Order dated January 16, 2004, which envisages tariffs to be IUC compliant, non-predatory and non-discriminatory.