Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has released its recommendations related to closure of mobile service.
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The TRAI recommendations follows inconvenience to mobile subscribers after the closure of telecom services in certain circles. It’s believed that Videocon shut down its mobile service due to trading of spectrum and Reliance Communications suspended CDMA business due to upgradation of technology to LTE – resulting into issues to mobile phone users.
A licensee should be permitted to discontinue any of the services, permitted under the scope of license without the need to surrender the license and a clause to this effect should be inserted in the UAS License.
If a UAS licensee decides to close down its wireless services, which were being provided through the administratively assigned spectrum, for which it has not paid the market discovered price, it must surrender such spectrum immediately upon closure of wireless access services.
In clause 30.3(b) of UL, “The Licensor reserves the right to reject such request” should be substituted by “The Licensor reserves the right to reject such request only when warranted in the interest of public or national security or in the event of national emergency/war.”
Provisions in the UL/UASL/CMTS licence should be made which mandates a licensee to give a prior information to Licensor and TRAI of at least 60 Calendar days in advance in case of closure of access services through any technology in the entire LSA or a part of it. It shall also be mandated to notify all its affected subscribers by sending a 30 Calendar days notice to each of them, stating the options available to the subscribers, including that of MNP facility.
The spectrum trading guidelines shall be amended to include the following time-lines to be adhered to by the DoT/WPC and the licensees: Both the trading parties shall jointly give a prior intimation of 45 days before the effective date of the trade to the WPC.
The WPC shall inform the reasons of objection, if any, and the 20 pending dues to the trading parties in writing within a maximum period of 15 days from the date of intimation of spectrum trade. The trading parties will reply to the WPC within a maximum period of 15 days from the date of receipt of intimation regarding the objection from the WPC.
The WPC will take a final decision and communicate within the expiry of 45 days since the first joint intimation by the trading parties. b. If the entire spectrum in all bands is being sold by a licensee, the joint intimation for trading should be submitted 60 days prior to the proposed date of trade.
Subsequent to the joint intimation, DoT should be given 21 days to raise the objections, if any. This will facilitate the licensee to give notice to Licensor and TRAI of at least 60 Calendar days in advance before the discontinuance of the service and also notifying its subscribers by sending a 30 Calendar days notice to each of them.