Telecom regulator TRAI has imposed penalty of Rs 56 lakh on telecom operators in the first half of this year for failing to meet call drop benchmark, Parliament was informed on Friday. According to the data shared by Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha in the Rajya Sabha, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India imposed highest penalty of Rs 22 lakh on Tata Teleservices, which is in process of merging its mobile business with Bharti Airtel, in March 2018.
TRAI found Idea Cellular and state-run telecom firm BSNL not meeting the call drop benchmark during January-March and April-June quarter. The regulator imposed penalty of Rs 10 lakh and Rs 12 lakh on Idea in first and second quarter of 2018, respectively.
It imposed penalty of Rs 2 lakh and Rs 4 lakh on BSNL during the first and second quarter, respectively. The regulator also found Telenor, which has merged mobile business with Airtel, not meeting quality of service criteria and imposed a penalty of Rs six lakh on the firm.
“As a result of continuous efforts, significant improvement has been observed in terms of telecom service providers’ compliance to TRAI quality of services benchmarks on call-drop rate in spite of rapid-increase in traffic volume and more stringent TRAI benchmarks effective from October 1, 2017,” Sinha said.
He said that about 9.74 lakh additional mobile sites for 2G/3G/4G-LTE services have been added by the telecom operators since July 2015, taking the total count of base station in the country to about 20.07 lakh in November 2018.