Reliance Jio has approached the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) with a complaint that Bharti and Vi (rebranded from Vodafone Idea) are furthering false rumours of Reliance being beneficiaries of the new farm laws. Bharti and Vi have launched a vicious, divisive campaign to malign Jio, the telecom major has told TRAI, sources told CNBC-TV18.com.
The Reliance-owned company in a letter to TRAI has alleged that Bharti and Vi are inciting the public by making claims that by porting away from Jio, they will be supporting farmers. Jio said that Bharti and Vi are fanning anti-government protests and suggested that the campaign is not limited to North India, but is being spread across the country.
The Mukesh Ambani-owned company has request TRAI to take immediate action against the campaign and the telecom companies.
According to the source, Jio wrote in the letter: "This is in furtherance to our aforementioned letter dated September 28, 2020, highlighting the unethical and anti-competitive MNP campaign being run by Airtel and VIL to capitalise on the ongoing farmer protests in northern parts of the country."
Jio accused Bharti Airtel and Vi of pursuing the "vicious and divisive campaign" through its employees, agents and retailers. "They are inciting the public by making preposterous claims that migrating Jio mobile numbers to their networks would be an act of support of farmers' protests."
The company attached photos of such campaigns across Punjab and other Northern states as annexure to the letter.
There were multiple points that Jio complained about and sought "strict action against these service providers for these unethical practices as well as unscrupulous violations and to issue necessary instructions to stop such campaigns with immediate effect and comply with regulatory framework in letter and spirit".
Meanwhile, Bharti Airtel denied the allegations in a statement and said, "We wish to emphatically deny this baseless charge. Airtel has operated in the telecom industry for 25 years. During this period, we have competed hard in the market place and striven to serve our customers with excellence. At the
same time we take great pride in treating our competitors and partners with respect. Despite being provoked by some competitors who we know will go to any length to make baseless allegations, adopt bullying tactics and use intimidatory behaviour we have always conducted our business with character and transparency something that we are deeply proud of and known for."
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(Edited by : Jerome)
First Published: IST