The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India proposes to collect a penalty of Rs 50,000 from operators if they violate any of the set quality norms for broadband services. The penalty will increase to Rs 1 lakh for the second violation.

TRAI had laid down the quality of service standards for broadband in 2006 but there was no provision to impose a penalty. But the regulator has been conducting periodic survey through independent agencies across the country to monitor the compliance of prescribed benchmarks.

Analysis of these reports of several past quarters reveals that some of the service providers are not meeting the quality of service benchmarks for some of the prescribed parameters and no consistent improvement is noticed in spite of the measures taken by TRAI.

“There is a need to provide for financial disincentives for failure to meet the benchmarks,” TRAI said while proposing the penalty.

There are a number of parameters laid out by the TRAI against which the quality of service offered by each operator is monitored.

For example, complaints related to bills should be less than two per 100 bills and all billing-related complaints should be resolved within four weeks. There are also benchmarks stipulated for activities such as fault repair, response time to the customer by call centres and service availability.

“The Authority will monitor the Quality of Service reported by service providers subsequent to the coming into force of these regulations from the point of view of non-compliance with the benchmarks and accordingly impose financial disincentive,” it added.

TRAI has asked operators to send in their comments to the proposal before it is finalised.

thomas.thomas@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on October 26, 2012)
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