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|October 27, 1998||
Telephone users' organisation cries foulThe Federation of Associations of Telephone Subscribers has recommended the establishment of a parallel organisation by private parties without any license fees. Competition, it claims, can bring out the best telephone services at reasonable rates.
In a memorandum submitted to the prime minister, finance minister and the chairman of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, FAT has protested
The proposed increase in various charges related to the use of telephone and other instruments attached to it are unwarranted, prohibitive, unjustified and without application of mind, the memorandum charges.
Strongly objecting to even a small increase in the charges by the telephone department, FAT has recommended drastic reduction in interest against 'deposit' or 'registration charges'. It has asked for audited accounts to be placed before public for scrutiny and comments.
FAT has also recommends increase in the number of free phone calls, reduction in tariff, drastic reduction in international call tariffs and the total freedom from time restrictions on phone calls made between 6 pm and 9 am on every working day. It has asked for similar exemption on all calls made on Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays.
The telephone department has collected from subscribers as well as would-be subscribers, large sums of money in the form of 'deposit' charges or 'registration' charges. FAT claims that this amount is utilised by the department for its own needs without having to pay any interest on it. The organisation has called this practice 'unjust and unfair'.
The telephone department can not justify the use of these funds free of interest on either ethical or business grounds, the FAT has said.
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