Finally, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) seems to be getting serious about ending the nuisance of unwanted telemarketing calls.
From January, companies making unwanted calls and text messages would not only be subject to fines ranging from Rs25,000 to Rs2,00,000, but could also stand to lose their telephone connections.
The proposed hefty penalties are part of the new rules that the telecommunications regulator will announce this week as it attempts to put in place a foolproof mechanism to shield customers from irritating calls and text messages.
The TRAI move will offer relief to mobile users in India, numbering over 700 million now.
So far, less than 90 million of them have registered with the do-not-call registry. The regulator was forced to act due to rampant complaints by do-not-call subscribers who were nonetheless being bombarded with unsolicited messages and calls.
Under the new system, mobile users would get an option of blocking all telemarketing voice calls and receive text messages only. Even for text messages, they can specify an area of their choice such as banking, insurance, loans, automobiles, and real estate.