You used to take your meals in a restaurant in the city. After a while you find that the quality of meals in that restaurant is deteriorated. What will you do? You might complain to the manager or the owner of the restaurant about it. Still, there is no improvement and you are not satisfied with the service. What will you do next? Will you make a complaint to the Food Quality Inspector in the Government? Will you file a petition in the jurisdictional consumer court? You won’t be doing any of these as they are time consuming and tedious. You will take the most easy and effective step. You will stop going to that restaurant and select another restaurant for your meals.
Exactly the same thing has happened in the telecom sector since last few years. There were lakhs of complaints about the poor service of particular telecom service providers (TSPs). The Mobile Number Portability (MNP) regulations (within a telecom circle) of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) implemented in 2010 has radically transformed the telecommunication services in India. Under that provision, any consumer can port out his connection to another operator and can get allotted the same number. This has ensured improvement in the services by telecom operators.
From July 3, 2015, the TSPs are ready to roll out MNP across the country allowing consumers to retain the same mobile number anywhere in India.
What is the procedure?
· Send an SMS ‘PORT' (space) Your ten digit cell number to 1900
· You will get a Unique Porting Code (UPC) through SMS from the donor operator (your present TSP)
· Approach the new operator (recipient operator) with the UPC within 15 days and submit the porting
request Form and Customer Application Form enclosing the proof of identity/address.
· Normally, recipient operators do not charge any fee for porting-in. The maximum prescribed fee that can be charged for processing is Rs 19/-
· The new operator, within 24 hrs, shall forward the request to Mobile Number Portability Service Provider (MNPSP)
· The donor operator shall, within 4 working days inform MNPSP whether the porting request is cleared or rejected (with reasons) by it.
· The porting shall take place within 36 hours (except in J&K, North East and Assam wherein it is 10 days), from the time of clearance by the donor operator.
· Maximum time for porting a mobile number is 10 days from the date of porting request.
· Service will get disrupted only for less than 3 hours, that too at midnight, when the porting takes place.
When porting request can be rejected?
· There are pending dues of more than Rs 10/- to be paid by the subscriber
· Porting request is made within 90 days of taking a connection
· A request for change of ownership of the connection is in process
· The mobile number to be ported is sub-judice or prohibited by a Court of Law or part of a group connection.
If any porting request is wrongfully rejected or delayed by the donor operator, on complaint with evidence, TRAI may impose on the TSP a financial disincentive of upto Rs 10000/- . It has levied more than 10 crores on this account so far.
Where to complain?
For any complaints on porting, please approach the complaint center of your existing operator and if it is not redressed, file an appeal to appellate authority. Appeal can be filed through email/fax/SMS. The details of the appellate authority can be found in the website of the TSP.
As on March 31st 2015, Indian consumers have successfully ported out more than 15.3 crore connections.
Now, why are you waiting? If you are not happy with the services of the existing TSP, make a porting request today! But ensure that the new operator has good network and service in your area.
© Sibichen K Mathew Views are personal. Source for information: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.
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