The Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down the policy that forces telecom companies to pay a penalty for call drops. A bench comprising Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman called the rule, enforced last year by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, “arbitrary and unreasonable”, News 18 reported.
The court was hearing pleas by several telecom companies against the TRAI's October 16, 2015, notification, which required them to pay users Rs 1 each for the first three dropped calls in a day. The Cellular Operators Association of India and Association of Unified Service Provider of India had approached the Supreme Court challenging the Delhi High Court’s order on February 29, which upheld the TRAI order.
The telecom companies had argued that they were being forced to pay consumers even though calls dropped for a variety of reasons, many of which were out of their control. TRAI had argued that this was a non-invasive way of dealing with the issue.