ISPs approach Compat against DoT on Internet telephony

Last Updated: Tuesday, September 13, 2011 - 22:23

New Delhi: Internet service providers has approached the Competition Appellate Tribunal against the fair trade regulator CCI, which had rejected their plea, and alleged that DoT discriminated against them vis-a-vis the telecom operators by not allowing the Internet telephony.

A petition by the Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI) would be placed Wednesday before a three-member bench headed by tribunal Chairman Justice Arijit Pasayat.

In its petition, ISPAI has challenged the order passed by the CCI and requested the tribunal to direct Director General for Investigation (DGI) to probe its allegation.

Refusing to hand over the matter to its probe unit DGI, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) in its order dated June 29 had held that 'prima facie' no case existed on allegations of ISPAI.

ISPAI has submitted that the closure of the case by CCI was wrong and it was based on the wrong representation made by the DoT before the fair trade regulator.
The association said that the sectoral regulator TRAI had in 2009 recommended that the Department of Telecom (DoT) allow ISPs to use telephone lines to make internet telephony calls.

However, DoT did not take any decision and did not allow opening of the Internet telephony to favour mobile operators and is preventing fair competition as it would result in cheaper calls.

CCI had closed the matter after the DoT submitted before it that the matter was still in active consideration before it.

CCI in its order passed by its five members had said," DoT clearly states that they have received the recommendations of TRAI and it is under active consideration. Since the matter is under the consideration of the government, no further action is required at this stage".

However, the CCI in its five-page order had also asked DoT "to take early decision in this matter".

Requesting an investigation by DGI in this matter, ISPAI submitted that DoT had given an impression before the CCI that it would take a decision very soon, which did not happen.


First Published: Tuesday, September 13, 2011 - 22:23
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