Vodafone India has complained to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) continuing with its Summer Surprise offer even after the regulator had advised it last week to roll it back. In a letter to Trai, Vodafone said, “Jio is continuing with this offer held as not meeting regulatory norms, in the garb of configuration changes. For past three days it has been promoting and luring customers to quickly recharge to avail the benefits of a non-compliant offer and also asking its retailers to communicate the same”.
Last week, Trai, in a verbal advisory, told Jio to roll back its Summer Surprise offer, under which the operator was providing its Prime members with 1GB data per day and free local and STD calls for three months on opting for the Rs 303 plan, as it did not fit the regulatory framework.
Jio announced the rollback of the offer adding, “As soon as operationally feasible”.
In its complaint to Trai, Vodafone further said, “In our view, such promotion of the customers on an offer held as non-compliant, is a blatant violation and disregard of Trai’s advisory. Such promotions to customers makes the regulatory advisory meaningless. Further, it paints a wrong picture to customers, of non-robust regulatory framework where non-compliant offers are allowed to be sold in market”.
Requesting Trai to immediately intervene in the matter, the telecom operator said that suitable directions should be issued to Jio for withdrawing the offer on “immediate basis” and notifying the consumers about withdrawal of offer from the date of advisory received from Trai.
When contacted, a Jio spokesperson said, “Please refer to our press release of April 6, wherein we made it clear that Jio Summer Surprise will be withdrawn as soon as it is operationally feasible, in compliance with the regulator’s advice. All the customers who have subscribed to Jio Summer Surprise offer prior to its discontinuation will remain eligible for the offer. We are pained to note such continued and deliberate attempts by competitors to create unnecessary confusion in the market.”
Meanwhile, Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal on Monday met Trai chairman RS Sharma. However, what transpired in the meeting could not be ascertained.