Case No. 10/2009. Case: Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI) Vs Department of Telecommunications (DoT). Competition Commision of India

Case NumberCase No. 10/2009
IssueCompetition Act, 2002 - Sections 2, 3, 3(1), 3(3), 4 and 26(2); Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 - Section 4
Judgement DateJune 29, 2010
CourtCompetition Commision of India


  1. This Information has been filed by the Informant on 13.10.2009 and was considered by the Commission in its meeting held on 27.10.2009. The Commission decided to request the opposite party for its views in the matter. The opposite party sent its views vide its letter dated 3.12.2009. Subsequently, the Informant was also given opportunity to present its views/comments before the Commission. The Informant appeared before the Commission through counsel on 9.2.2010 who made detailed submissions and requested to file an amended information. The amended information was filed on 10.3.2010 which was discussed in the meeting of the Commission on 25.3.2010 when the Informant was also present. Subsequently Informant filed additional information on 21.4.2010 and made oral submissions regarding the same in the meeting of the commission held on 4.5.2010.

  2. Brief facts of the case as stated by the Informant are as follows:

    2.1 The Informant is a registered association of various Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in India. The information relates to alleged discriminatory behaviour of the Department of Telecommunication (Opposite Party) in providing permission for internet telephony services.

    2.2. The opposite party is responsible for grant of licenses to operators for providing basic and value added services in the telecom sector in the country. It has been alleged that opposite party has imposed discriminatory restrictions on Internet Service Providers(ISPs) in providing internet telephony services. Whereas, Unified Access Service License (UASL), Basic Service Operators(BSO) and Cellular Mobile Telephone' Services (CMTS) licensees have been allowed to provide unrestricted internet telephony services to their subscribers, the same has not been permitted to internet service providers. UASL, BSO and CMTS licencees are not launching/promoting internet telephony services for fear of bringing down call charges which would hurt their existing revenue model. Possible competition from ISPs has been prevented by not permitting them to provide unrestricted internet telephony services. ISPs are not allowed to offer connectivity with Public Switched Telephony Network (PSTM)/ Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN). In otherwords ISPs are not allowed to connect to regular land lines phones or mobile phones. Such restrictions are not imposed on UASL/CMTS licencees. Thus Department of Telecommunications is abusing its dominant position as a licensing authority.


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