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Not just telcos, even customers are struggling with poor signals

Consumer rants about bad mobile networks are nothing new but the whole thing can assume new significance in these volatile times

Business Standard 

STATSGURU: Incumbent telcos to face the heat

Cross connection

Consumer rants about bad mobile networks are nothing new but the whole thing can assume new significance in these volatile times. As Airtel and struggle to pay the dues linked to adjusted gross revenues, or AGR, to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), a telecom executive trudging down the corridor in the office was seen wringing his hands frustratedly: "mein hi signal nahin hai (I am not receiving mobile signals even inside the office)," he said as he stepped outside to complete the call. Theoretically, the DoT softening its stance on the payment of AGR or on the terms of payment process is an obvious step to ameliorate the situation. But making subscribers struggle for signals isn't the best way for struggling telecoms to argue their case.

O'Brien bats for Kamra

On Wednesday, at a meeting of the parliamentary standing committee on transport, which also looks at aviation-related issues, members flagged the "unlawful" and "arbitrary" ban imposed on stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra (pictured) by four major airlines. In a letter to the committee Chairman

T G Venkatesh, member Derek O'Brien said IndiGo, Air India, SpiceJet and GoAir imposed the ban on Kamra without any inquiry, and that the Union Minister for Civil Aviation endorsed the ban. O'Brien, a Trinamool Congress MP, said the ban on Kamra violated the "rules for handling of unruly passengers and principles of natural justice and was extremely arbitrary". With several other members supporting the issue, O'Brien urged the committee to take cognisance of the incident because "occurrence of such incidents can have a negative bearing on the aviation policy of the nation".

Presidential suite

Traders often try to make money by spreading positive news pertaining to a company as it can potentially drive stock prices. Lately, some of them are attempting to create a positive sentiment about ITC, whose shares have been soft since the Budget, following an increase in cigarette tax. “US President Donald Trump’s India visit is a positive for ITC. Previously, four US presidents have stayed at the ITC Maurya in Delhi. This time, too, it should be no exception. US Secret Service books an entire hotel for its delegation and the president stays in the presidential suite on the 14th floor,” says one SMS doing the rounds.

First Published: Wed, February 19 2020. 23:47 IST