3 private operators still disconnected from BSNL

The standoff between BSNL and private service operators continues even as services remained adversely hit for the 11th consecutive day.

Written by RAGHAV OHRI | Chandigarh | Published:October 10, 2011 3:04 am

The standoff between BSNL and private service operators continues even as services remained adversely hit for the 11th consecutive day. BSNL had restored services of Reliance,Tata and MTS. However,connectivity between Idea,Airtel and Vodafone continue to remain adversely affected.

Taking public convenience into account,the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) in its order held that “equities can be adjusted at an appropriate stage” and had asked Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd to restore the connectivity of private service operators on September 30.

Reliance,Tata and MTS had moved the tribunal seeking restoration of services disconnected between the mobile phone services of private operators and BSNL landline phones. BSNL had severed connectivity owing to non-payment of revised carriage charges by private service operators.

While Ranjan Mathews,Director-General,Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) claims that the order of tribunal applies to other private service operators also,the BSNL authorities differ.

“This is discrimination by BSNL. Once the circular demanding revised charges has been stayed,they cannot discriminate against other private service operators—Airtel,Idea and Vodafone,” said Mathews.

But a senior official with BSNL said,“Services of those operators which obtained this order have been restored. The other three operators do not have any such order in their favour and will have to pay the revised carriage charges,only after which their services will be restored.”

On September 30,the TDSAT had stayed the operation of BSNL’s July 21 circular to private service operators.

The tribunal held “that BSNL should not be deprived of its legitimate due although is correct,but for the time being we are of the opinion that equities can be adjusted at an appropriate stage”.

Subject to payment,the tribunal had ruled that “the services which have been disconnected,may be restored.”

As for payment of charges,the tribunal said,“It is directed that the petitioners shall continue to pay at the same rate at which they had been paying after July,2010”.

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