The popular telecom operator Vodafone recently filed a complaint to Trai that Reliance Jio is still making efforts to "lure customers" to subscribe the 'Summer Surprise' offer regardless of the regulator finding it in violation of norms.
"Reliance Jio is continuing with this offer held as not meeting regulatory norms, in the garb of configuration changes. For past three days, it has been promoting and luring customers to quickly recharge to avail the benefits of a non-compliant offer and also asking its retailers to communicate the same," Vodafone said in a letter to Trai.
Well that’s not all, the letter also referred to SMSes supposedly being sent by Reliance Jio to consumers and retailers asking them to rapidly recharge to avail the benefit of the scheme. SMS content reads that Jio has given time till April 10 to its customers for enrolling for the idea.
On March 31, the Mukesh Ambani-led Jio had proclaimed that the patrons who were yet to register for its "Prime Membership Plan" will have time till April 15 to join the scheme by paying Rs 99 and recharging with a least amount of Rs 303, which will get them 3-month complimentary 4G service .
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) request Jio on April 6 to end the offer as it was not in conformity with the norms.
"In our view, such promotion of the customers on an offer held as non-compliant, is a blatant violation and disregard of Trai's advisory. Such promotions to customers make the regulatory advisory meaningless," the letter said.
Vodafone said that Reliance Jio's persistence of the plan paints a incorrect image to customers of non-robust regulatory structure where non-complaint offer are permissible to be sold in the market.
"Considering above, we request for Trai's immediate intervention and issuance of suitable directions to Reliance Jio for withdrawing the said offer on immediate basis and notifying the consumers about withdrawal of said offer from the date of advisory received from Trai," the letter said.
Further, the Reliance Jio representative said the telco in its press release that on April 6 made it clear that the 'Summer Surprise' offer will be withdrawn as quickly as it is operationally viable, in compliance with the regulator's advice.
"All the customers who have subscribed to the 'Summer Surprise' prior to its discontinuation will remain eligible for the offer. We are pained to note such continued and deliberate attempts by competitors to create unnecessary confusion in the market," the spokesperson said.
However, Vodafone choose not to comment on the letter it sent to the regulator.
According to sources, Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal also recently met the Trai chairman R S Sharma and supposed to have talk about a array of issues, including the Jio offer.