TRAI supports Net Neutrality. End of road for Free Basics, Airtel Zero

In a landmark decision today, TRAI (Telecom regulatory authority of India) has stated its support for Net Neutrality stating “no company to offer/charge discriminatory tariffs for data on basis of content”.

This decision comes as a relief to a lot of internet enthusiasts across the country. Ever since Facebook started advertising free basics aggressively, there were rumors that Indian government might approve the suggestion to provide basic internet for free as a part of free basics, however, all those speculations are now over.

TRAI came to openly criticise the initiatives in the country vouching for the ‘privileged’ internet and said that no one in the country can take benefit by provide internet on the basis of content and applications. TRAI is working on creating a regulatory platform for the telecom operators. However, TRAI does not have any control over the internet companies such as hathway.

Emergency services, however, will be exempted from the current decision. “Reduced tariff for accessing or providing emergency services, or at times of public emergency has been permitted,” said the decision.

The decision is applicable starting immediately and there will be a fine of Rs 50,000 per day in case of any violation from the telecom operators.

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