[times of india] The Supreme Court said that state-owned BSNL is not entitled to charge private operators for providing signaling network for roaming services just on the basis of registration by their subscribers, even though they were not availing the facility.
BSNL provides connection to private operators who offer roaming services to their subscribers and charge monthly registration fees at the rate of Rs 25 per user for domestic roaming and Rs 50 for international roaming.
There are several subscribers who register for the roaming service but may not avail the facility unless they move out from their home network.
A bench headed by Chief Justice S H Kapadia dismissed the BSNL plea that it was entitled to charge Rs 25 and Rs 50 for national and international roaming charged from the companies whether the registered subscriber avail the service or not.
The court found no merit in the BSNL appeal, which was filed to challenge the TDSAT order.
The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) on September, 1, 2010 had said that the BSNL was entitled to take interconnect charges for the roaming facilities availed by the subscribers of the private telecom operators using its network.
The tribunal in its order had said that only on the basis that the subscribers were registered for the roaming facilities with their servicer providers did not enable the PSU to charge roaming facilities from the operators.
Against this order, the PSU had moved the apex court, saying that the clause 6.6 of the interconnect agreement with the cellular operators doesn't stipulate that the interconnect charges for roaming by the subscriber of the private operators would be payable to BSNL only on the actual use of its network for such facilities.
The BSNL submitted that the actual user of roaming facility by the subscriber was not at all any condition in relation to the entitlement of BSNL to recover signaling charges from the private operators for using its network.
The PSU contended that immediately upon registration of the subscriber for roaming facility by the private service operators, the BSNL becomes entitled for payment of roaming facilities.
Supreme Court turns down BSNL plea on roaming services charges