New Delhi: In a bid to rein in pesky calls and text messages, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has blacklisted 15 telemarketers and issued notices to 246 of them, while deducting Rs1.36 crore security deposit for violations of various norms.

According to official data, 15 telemarketers have been blacklisted from 27 September 2011—when Trai issued guidelines on unsolicited commercial communications—till 25 June this year.

Trai has sent 246 notices and deducted Rs1.36 crore from security deposit of telemarketers for violations during the period from 27 September 2011 to 30 July 2013.

Trai had implemented Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations from 27 September 2011.

As per the regulations, the telemarketers have to deposit some amount to their service provider as security deposit. There is a provision of deduction from Rs25,000 to Rs2.5 lakh in case of violation by them.

Telemarketers are required to register with Trai in order to send commercial communications to telecom consumers.

They are not allowed to send commercial communications to all those subscribers who have registered with the National Customer Preference Registry, earlier known as ‘Do Not Call Registry’.

A different set of numbers starting with ‘70’ were issued to telemarketers to help unregistered subscribers identify commercial calls and decide whether to accept or reject them.

However, there were various instances when the commercial communication was not sent by the registered telemarketers.

Telecom minister Kapil Sibal said recently that with the implementation of tougher guidelines by Trai, the number of complaints relating to unsolicited commercial communications have reduced considerably.

“Prior to the coming into force of the regulations from 27 September 2011, on an average 47,454 complaints were received per month (averaged over the period from March 2010 to March 2011)," Sibal had said.

“However, the total number of complaints lodged by telecom consumers with their service providers has come down to about 27,000 complaints per month after coming into force of this regulations since 27 September 2011," he added.

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