The Supreme Court (SC) has asked Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea to share details of segmented tariff or specific offers for some of their customers with the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). SC heard a plea filed by TRAI which sought information on segmented offers given by telecom companies to customers looking to migrate.
The disputed segmented tariff offers are promotions and discounts made to customers showing an inclination towards shifting to other companies. The telecom companies offer superior data speeds, preferential customer status, access to over-the-top (OTT) streaming platforms to such customers.
The three-judge bench headed by Justice SA Bobde found that the TRAI’s plea sought the information that comes within its powers. Earlier, the Telecommunications Dispute Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) gave the decision in favour of Airtel and Vodafone that argued suspected violation of commercial confidentiality and help rivals poach their subscribers. The appellate tribunal said TRAI had no authority to call for such general information from operators.
The TRAI was unsatisfied with the decision and thus it appealed to the Supreme Court. Before appealing, the TRAI had modified its order to seek information on segmented offers for a limited period. After the modification, the SC gave the decision on its favour.