Good news for more than 900 million Telecom service customers (Mobile, Landline and Broadband) who are facing tough time dealing with complaints, Department of Telecom (DoT) today issued clarification and said that any consumer forum or consumer court cannot deny hearing of telecom consumer grievances.
In 2009 Supreme Court judgment barred Consumer forums to hear telecom consumer grievance, The apex court ruling had held that as per Section 7B of the Indian Telegraph Act of 1885 vintage, a dispute between a consumer and a telephone service provider can be resolved only through arbitration and the consumer is barred from moving a consumer forum for redressal of grievances against a telephone company.
Today DoT has issued clarification regarding the above matter and said that “no consumer forum can reject telecom case”. DoT and Telecom regulator TRAI, categorically saying that call centers and other forums set up by telecom firms or mobile service providers to resolve consumer’s complaint will not take away their right to approach the consumer court.
“The provisions of these regulations are in addition to any right conferred upon the consumers under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 or any other law for the time being in force,” the TRAI regulations said.
“Any consumer may, at any time, during pendency of redressal of his grievance, or after filing of the complaint or appeal, under these regulations, exercise his right conferred upon him under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 or any other law for the time being in force and seek redressal of his grievance under that Act or law,” it had added.