The heads of Zomato, Paytm, Truly Madly, GOQii, Metis Learning, Mouthshut.com, SVG Media, Teesort.com and FlipClass.com have written to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, endorsing their support for net neutrality. The letter to TRAI chairman RS Sharma asked the body to issue clear regulations preventing anyone from “acting as gatekeepers offering restricted Internet services instead of the open internet”, reported the Hindustan Times. Bigger internet companies like Google and Facebook have done the opposite, voicing concern about the concept of net neutrality in the country. Net neutrality advocates that all content on the Internet should be treated equally and be equally accessible.
The letter was written in response to TRAI's consultation paper on differential pricing of data services issued earlier this month. The paper sought comments on whether differential pricing and discounted tariffs for accessing a few websites should be allowed. The deadline for comments on the paper is December 30, while TRAI’s deadline for counter comments is January 7. Amid the debate on net neutrality, Facebook's Free Basics campaign – which pitches for free Internet for the poor in India – has also come under the scanner as it violates the rules of net neutrality.