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Proposed Augmentation of interconnection capacity by Vodafone.

Maharashtra, Sept. 16 -- Mukesh Ambani led Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited ("RJIL") welcomes the decision of Vodafone India Limited ("Vodafone") of providing more points of interconnection ("POI") to it, as indicated in Vodafone's press statement issued today. However, the quantum of POIs proposed to be released by Vodafone as per its press release is substantially less than the requirement estimated based on transparent workings shared with Vodafone.

RJIL has been writing regularly to Vodafone regarding its requirement for interconnection capacity over the last few months. Necessary details have been provided from time to time, highlighting the urgency of the requirement and the impact on Quality of Service parameters. However, no action was taken for the last several weeks, resulting in non-compliance of TRAI regulation on quality of service which mandates that POI congestion should not affect more than 1 call in every 200 calls made.

The situation has deteriorated significantly in the last few weeks, with over 80calls failing out of every 100 call attempts. In the last 10 days alone, over 15 crore RJIL calls have failed on the Vodafone network. While RJIL has rolled out a state-of-the-art network, the benefits of superior voice technology have been denied to Indian customers due to the POI congestion. Indian customers have not been able to enjoy RJIL's free voice offer as a result of such anti- competitive behaviour of incumbent operators.

RJIL has been raising the issue of insufficient POIs as anti-competitive aimed at hindering the entry of a new operator. Such hurdles result in poor experience for RJIL customers who are trying to make calls to incumbent operators' networks. It is unfortunate that TRAI's intervention was required for Vodafone to resume augmentation of POIs as admitted in its press release. Vodafone ought to have augmented POIs by itself in compliance with its license terms.

Furthermore, Vodafone and the other incumbent operators have also been blocking the mobile number portability ("MNP") facility for their subscribers who wish to subscribe to Jio services on baseless and unsubstantiated grounds. This is another example of disregard of license terms and their obligations under the Telecommunication Mobile Number Portability Regulations, 2009 ("MNP Regulations") and TRAI directions. This is again an anti- competitive move aimed at stifling a new operator, denying the Indian customers the benefit of choice of service provider. This is against public interest and fair play.

RJIL hopes that Vodafone will enhance the PoI's sufficiently to meet their license obligation of QoSwith immediate effect and maintain these parameters on an ongoing basis. Vodafone must also immediately make available MNP to all its subscribers opting to port to RJIL in accordance with the license terms and MNP regulations.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from India PRwire.

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Publication:India PRwire
Date:Sep 16, 2016
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