Prepaid Mobile Connections with Rs.20 Balance Cannot be Deactivated : TRAI

India’s Telecom regulator TRAI today released a Regulation on ‘Deactivation of Cellular Mobile Telephone Connections due to Non-usage’ where in it said that  inactive prepaid mobile connections cannot be deactivated if they have a minimum balance of Rs.20 in their account and the time period for considering ‘inactive’ has been set at 90 days.

TRAI Allows Mobile Operators to Offer Combo Recharge

TRaid said that at present, there is lack of transparency in carrying out such disconnections of mobile connections by verious service providers. Prepaid mobile consumers are also not adequately informed regarding the terms and conditions of such disconnections. In the event of deactivation, the balance amount in the account of the consumer gets forfeited. In such conditions, deactiation has been causing inconvenience to consumers.

TRAI announced the Telecom Consumers Protection (Sixth Amendment) Regulations, 2013 seeks to protect the interests of mobile consumers while keeping in mind the major concerns of TSPs in the matter of deactivation of SIMs.

TRAI guidelines for Deactivation of Mobile Connection due to non-usage :

  1. The mobile connections of prepaid consumers shall not be deactivated for any period of non-usage less than 90 days;
  2. For the purpose of usage, a voice call/ video call (incoming or outgoing) or an outgoing SMS or a data usage or usage of Value Added Services, or payment of rental (in case of post paid connection) etc. shall definitely fall in the scope of activity, the service provider may prescribe any other activity as well.
  3. There shall be no deactivation if the balance in prepaid consumer account is Rs.20/- or more.
  4. An ‘Automatic Number Retention Scheme’ shall be implemented for prepaid consumers on payment of reasonable charges.
  5. A consumer whose connection is deactivated shall be given a grace period of 15 days within which he can reactivate the same number;.
  6. Consumers shall be transparently communicated the terms and conditions of deactivation of SIMs due to non-usage.
  7. The Regulations also mandate implementation of a ‘Safe Custody Scheme’ for postpaid consumers on payment of a reasonable charge. Such consumers will not be required to pay monthly rental during the period of safe custody.

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78 Comments on "Prepaid Mobile Connections with Rs.20 Balance Cannot be Deactivated : TRAI"


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Nabina Chandra Sahu
October 12, 2016 8:40 pm 8:40 PM

I am now at USA ON VISIT, SINCE 29TH MAY 2016 AND WILL BE BACK BY 26HT OCT 2016 . MY PREPAID mobile number 9437360281 could be used as there is no tower here at U.S.A. Can I continue with same number when am back to India this month?

Colonel Zaysen
February 14, 2016 3:49 am 3:49 AM
Recently Fraudphone in Delhi-NCR Region disconnected one villagers Mobile # even though it had Balance above Rs 50 and was in use constantly. Also it was following the non-existent or may be existing minimum recharge condition of Rs 200 once in six months. The reason sited was that the scheme and SIM were valid for just 6 months i.e all STD Calls @ 40 ps/minute and as the scheme was closed the SIM could no longer be used. The argument is lame as the SIM worked for more than six months i.e from Dec 2014 till 1st Week of Feb… Read more »
January 19, 2016 12:16 am 12:16 AM

my reliance number deactivated since 02 12 2015 … can i activate….customer care says it not active plz gave solution sir…….

Mohammed Irshad
August 27, 2015 8:11 pm 8:11 PM

I took new sim and they said 80 rs offer first month 40 and other 40 rs get next two months by had 20 20 I got first month 40 I didn’t got next month 20 please recharge as soon as my phone number is 7795631499

July 14, 2015 10:00 pm 10:00 PM

What are the SMS charges for porting prepaid number,after having a balance of rs 75 I was unable to send the message,error message shows you have insufficient balance in your account

July 14, 2015 10:33 pm 10:33 PM
@Jeetendra – there are no charges for porting any number (Pre/Post) except the charges for the SMS to 1900!! In some cases too 1900 SMS are toll-free, however this varies from Operator to Operator, whether you are on Roaming when you send the sms to 1900 etc…… so suggest you keep a min of Rs 5 balance (after sending the SMS to 1900). Now, as in your case you are unable to send SMS (and hence generate the UPC) try the following: 1. Sending the sms from HOME Network (not while on Roaming) 2. Check if your phone is prefixing… Read more »
Amit Lassi
March 26, 2015 10:16 am 10:16 AM

My mobile no. 9320067890 which was ported from Reliance CDMA to Idea has been deactivated on 20/03/2015, due to Business I am in Muscat from Nov 2014 and same number was not in use. On visiting to Idea Web World I got reply that this number transferred to Reliance and on the other hand Reliance Web World saying still it is under Idea’s custody as calling on number Idea tone is coming. And neither of them accepting 15 Days Grace period option as per TRAI Regulations. Can you please assist me how I can get reactivate my number.

July 14, 2015 10:33 pm 10:33 PM

@Amit Lassi – now its JULY 2015 so Im sure the number would be back with Reliance – goto them and get the number back as a fresh activation

December 9, 2014 10:44 pm 10:44 PM

My sim deactiveted without notification and saying this is not our compny sim..and ur nt our consumer..and didnt saying correct reasion for it.and am using it fast three years.

July 14, 2015 10:35 pm 10:35 PM

@Manjunath – Contact the TSP (Telecom Service Provider) and ask them the following (get it in writing):
1. Date of de-activation
2. Reason for de-activation
3. Process to get the number back

Then goto their office with the email printout (of their reply) and get your number back.

November 9, 2014 12:19 am 12:19 AM

very nice

irfan khan
November 5, 2014 9:16 am 9:16 AM

From past two years i am using my personal number.Tata docomo has done deactive my no. Vast service i loses my business number

November 3, 2014 8:35 am 8:35 AM

Vodafone deactivated my sim card and when i called the number someone else answered.My concern is that do the telecom operators keep oir documents even after deactivating our number and reissuing it to someone else.

July 14, 2015 10:37 pm 10:37 PM

@Suarab – Yes the telcos keep our docs for ever … even if the number is recycled (as in your case).
However there is no cause to worry : the account (in your name) will have a date of deactivation which, as per TRAI, should be 45-60 days BEFORE the activation date of the number being re-issued to the next customer.


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