TDSAT sets aside the penalty on Airtel and Vodafone

Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has set aside Rs 650 crore penalty on Airtel and Rs 100 crore fine on Vodafone imposed by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for offering the SLD services violating license norms that allows roaming users to use local network without paying STD and roaming charges.

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A year ago, DoT had slapped a notice of Rs 50 crore for 13 circles each on Airtel and Vodafone and they charged the penalty of Rs 50 Crores for 3 circles together with Mumbai and Delhi for offering unauthorized SLD (Subscriber Local Dialing) services in two circles between 2003 and 2005.

“We, accordingly, set aside the impugned orders of penalty/demand notices in all the three cases. In the result all the petitions are allowed with costs quantified at Rs 25,000 for each of the petitions,” said Justice Aftab Alam, TDSAT

Further, TDSAT said that there was no loss to BSNL due to these services by Airtel and Vodafone. 

Subscribers gained from violation

The call from Mumbai to the Delhi number is a long-distance or STD call but with SLD, the subscriber could save on STD charges. Though the service provided by Airtel offered immense advantage to subscribers, DoT issued a notice to the operator saying that it violated the national routing plan, number plan and without authorisation bypassed national long distance traffic. On June 20, 2003, the department had asked Airtel to stop the service. But DoT later found out that the service was provided as SLD till 2005. DoT had accentuated that the national routing and numbering plan has been disobeyed by such type of service in an unauthorised fashion and avoided the national long distance traffic.

The regulator had warned Vodafone to stop these unauthorised services on June 20, 2003 but the company had continued the services stating optimal routing and direct connect till 2005. From the PMO reference in 2005, this was brought to the notice of DoT. The Department of Telecom imposed the demand notice on the service provider.

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2 Comments on "TDSAT sets aside the penalty on Airtel and Vodafone"

 

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JOY
December 11, 2014 3:46 pm 3:46 PM

@Srikapardhi Sir Vodafone entered India after 2007, how these penalties of 2003 can be imposed ?? Please explain….

Sudhakar
December 10, 2014 5:49 pm 5:49 PM

What is there to fine?. I think the shameless government is going to kill the mobile industry in India. It has already set the CDMA spectrum price of dizzying Rs.3646 crore for 1 MHz of spectrum, increased the 3G spectrum price, forcing the operators to participate in the auction instead of renewing the license and so on.
Not even a single political party has talked against this such a huge price.

From this, note the money plucking character of the shameless politicians !!!!.
I think the only candidate to which the people can vote in all the future election is NOTA (49-O).

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