Trust Jio goes to TRAI against Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea

Reliance Industries’ telecommunications division has asked the Indian telecommunications authority to take action against rivals Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea for allegedly running a false propaganda campaign to attract their subscribers.

In a December 10 letter, Reliance Jio claimed the two companies had created the impression that Reliance, which also operates retail stores, could benefit from three new agricultural laws introduced by the Indian government in September.

“We reiterate that we have received a large number of port-out (cancellation) requests due to the above false propaganda from competitors to influence customer perception,” said Reliance Jio in the letter to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, which was seen by Reuters.

Farmers have been demonstrating for almost three weeks against deregulation of the agricultural sector, which enables them to sell products to buyers outside the state-regulated wholesale markets, where producers are guaranteed a minimum price.

Bharti Airtel said in a statement: “We would like to strongly reject this baseless charge.” Bharti Airtel also said the company treats its competitors and partners with respect.

Vodafone Idea said it “believes in doing business with ethics and Reliance’s claims were unfounded.”

The telecommunications authority could not be reached outside of regular business hours.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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