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TDSAT asks Trai to submit documents, share specifics of Jio's offers

Airtel & Idea had challenged Trai's decision allowing Jio to extend its free offers beyond 90 days

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Jio, Reliance

Telecom tribunal on Monday asked regulator to place all documents pertaining to Jio's and specify whether the tariffs were a regular plan, base plan or special tariff voucher.

is hearing an appeal by incumbent players and challenging TRAI's decision to allow the new operator to continue free promotional offer beyond the stipulated 90 days.

The two operators had also filed fresh plea against TRAI's clean chit to Jio tariffs in an order dated January 31, 2017.

During the hearing today, asked the regulator to file all the documents pertaining to Jio's two offers - Jio Welcome Offer and Happy New Year Offer - by February 23.

The tribunal has fixed February 28 as the next date of hearing.

"We want to know what is this...It is a regular plan, base plan, special tariff voucher, top up or a combo voucher...," Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) member A K Bhargava said instructing the regulator to clearly state the classification of the offers.

During the hearing today, Jio Counsel Ramji Srinivasan argued that the company's two offers were "distinct", and were in compliance with the requirements of promotional offer (2008 direction) and Telecom Tariff Order.

Jio further contended that while it had duly informed subscribers about the shift to the new offer through website, email and SMS, consent of subscribers for such a shift is not required when benefits are being extended and there are "no added liability".

In a recent appeal, termed TRAI's January 31, 2017 order as "wholly illegal" and "palpably wrong". The Sunil Mittal led firm accused the regulator of "wrongly" holding Jio's promotional offer as compliant with the regulatory guidelines, distinct and hence not an extension of the previous offer.

On January 31, 2017, had said that Reliance Jio's free voice calling and data plan on its mobile services were not a violation of the regulatory guidelines on promotional offers.

had said that its examination had revealed that Happy New Year Offer launched by on December 4, 2016 is distinct from its earlier Jio Welcome Offer and could not be treated as an extension of the earlier promotional offer as the benefits under both differed.

TRAI's opinion in the matter came after TDSAT asked it to take a decision "within reasonable time" on Jio's tariffs in the wake of petitions filed by and The operators had approached the telecom dispute tribunal against the regulator for allowing to continue free promotional offer beyond the stipulated 90 days.

First Published: Mon, February 20 2017. 20:15 IST