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Reliance Info contests call routing fine

Press Trust Of India  |  New Delhi 

Terming as "unjustified and untenable" the penalty of Rs 150 crore imposed by the department of telecom on it, today said the showcause notice had not listed out any particular violation of licence by the company.
"There has been no violation of any of the licence conditions," the company said in a 9-page reply to the telecommunications department on the showcause notice for allegedly routing international calls as local.
"The telecom department has failed to provide a properly reasoned order. The showcause notice issued to us is altogether lacking in material particulars," Reliance said, adding that the company was giving only a preliminary reply and would file a detailed reply to the showcause notice at an appropriate stage when material particulars were provided.
Asked if Reliance was exploring legal options to challenge the telecom department's penalty, Reliance officials said: "There is no such plan. The telecom department has not yet given its final ruling; how can we think of approaching court."
Reliance had said the calls in question were under the home country direct service of the company which was also recognised by the International Telecom Union.
The telecom department had issued a showcause notice to Reliance on November 24, asking why a penalty of Rs 150 crore should not be levied on it for flouting licence conditions.
The telecom department notice had also stated that the facility and feature provided by reliance for such international traffic was not a home country direct service in terms of International Telecom Union's recommendations and was not as per the provisions in the unified access service for different service areas.
DoT busts fake phone exchanges
The department of telecommunications has busted three illegal telephone exchanges -- two in Delhi and one in Nagpur.
The detection of the illegal exchanges is being attributed to the recently publicised toll-free numbers to report illegal international phone calls.
Acting on a complaint, the telecom monitoring cell swooped on an ilegal operator called Net Serve at Nehru Place in New Delhi. The operator was using a local caller line identification number for an international call.
During the search, equipment meant for routing illegal international calls like VoIP Gateway, routers and LAN switches were discovered.
At two different places, a total of twelve telephone lines of TouchTel and seven lines of Tata Indicom were found connected to an illegal set-up. DSL connection of VSNL and Dishnet was used to connect to Internet.
The illegal operators receive the incoming international calls through internet and put them on the local or national telecom network bypassing the International Long Distance Telecom Operators causing them financial loss.
DOT had set up regional vigilance monitoring cell at Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad to detect illegal international calls.
In the raid conducted at Nagpur, a private limited company Sidpro Info was misusing the fixed wireless lines and 512 kpbs leased lines it had taken from to illegally route international calls.

First Published: Fri, December 03 2004. 00:00 IST