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Department of Telecom to approach TRAI to suggest action on call drops

Airtel

Thursday, 13 August,New Delhi: In order to address the menace of call drops, Department of Telecom (DoT) will soon approach TRAI for further action to be taken on the issue and present the data it received through special audit conducted last month.

DoT undertook a special audit last month to assess the coverage and quality of service of all mobile operators in metro cities in a bid to assess the problem of call drops. The department received data for most of the areas.

“Data for DoT audit has come and now analysis of that has been going on. It will be completed in 5-6 days than we will approach TRAI with that data and ask what action should be taken,” Telecom Secretary Rakesh Garg told PTI.

He added the department will also ask telecom service providers (TSPs) to make improvement in their service.

DoT had already approached Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to suggest a disincentive mechanism to tackle the problem of call drops.

It also undertook a meeting on the issue today wherein elaborate discussions took place on the reasons responsible for the problem.

“We did a brainstorming today on the reasons for call drops,” Garg said.

The department is also analysing action taken reports submitted by operators regarding the measures they have taken to address the issue.

Garg also held a meeting with mobile operators in April to review the issues related to quality of service in telecom networks across the country.

An official in DoT said there are various reasons for call drops which include increased data growth (about 70-80%).

Further, the official said redistribution of spectrum after the March auction and some operators have now less spectrum in 900 MHz band and more in 1800 MHz.

“Now the operators need to invest more in 1800 MHz for GSM but due to changing technologies, they are not investing as after 1-2 years, there will be less demand for GSM and more people will come on LTE. So they have allocated more spectrum for LTE where customers are very few as on now, which is causing call drops,” the official added.

A recent report by TRAI said most of the telecom operators in Delhi and Mumbai are not meeting the prescribed standards regarding call drops.

An independent drive test conducted by TUV SUD between June 23 and 24 in Mumbai and July 9-11 in Delhi revealed that only Tata (CDMA) in Delhi and Airtel in Mumbai were meeting the benchmark prescribed for call drops.

Earlier, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had asked mobile operators to walk extra mile to reinforce their systems as they have enough spectrum to provide services without interruption.

PTI