New Rules By TRAI On Interconnectivity
The authorized telecom regulator of India, TRAI on Tuesday instructed the service providers to enter into interconnection contract, which is based on non-discriminatory basis within 30 days of receiving network connectivity appeal from another operator. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India or TRAI further issued the Telecom Interconnection Regulations 2018 that encompasses rules for crafting network connectivity agreements, provisioning of such connectivity amongst the service providers at the initial stages, increase of points of interconnect, the applicable rates or charges, disconnection of ports and financial disincentive on interconnection issues.
TRAI said in a statement that these rules and regulations will come into effect from February 1, 2018, and these regulations will spread over to all the service providers offering telecom services in India. TRAI further added that through these rules and regulations, the authority has directed that every service provider should within 30 days of receipt of request from a service provider and enter interconnection treaty on non-discriminatory basis with such service provider.
TRAI has also charted an outline for provisioning and enhancing of inter connectivity ports and lay down a step-by-step process for provisioning of such ports. The rules issued today also tracks a comprehensive discussion process by the TRAI that started in October 2016 and comprised of open house discussions and written comments by stakeholders. The latest models assume consequences as interconnectivity was at the crossroads between Reliance Jio and the old telecom operators like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular, at the time when the newcomer launched its services in 2016.
The new entrant, Reliance Jio, had accused large recognized operators for not providing sufficient Points of Interconnect, which can lead to huge call failures on its network, while the consumers blamed free calls offered by Reliance Jio for so called tsunami of telecom network traffic.