Tag Archives: Toll-Free-India

Understanding Indian Toll Free Number Incompatibility

If you are wondering like me why do they mention call 1-800 180 0016 [BSNL / MTNL only], then here is the answer. I was extremely unhappy and thought Toll Free Calling was a mess created by Telecom service providers. No!!! Business Establishments and Corporates establishing the connections are equally responsible.

It was one of my many goals this year to get the toll free number calling streamlined by writing and lobbying with TRAI and issue regulations which I will still do, but businesses like your credit card, bank, auto company etc have an equal say in this anti-consumer practice.

I finally got to speak to Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications representatives to understand the Toll Free Number mechanism in India. It works such that if I opt to establish a toll free number, I can decide on calls originating from which networks to be accepted and which can be rejected. The reason for rejecting other network calls is Telecom Operators treat them as STD calls if they originate from Inter-Circle and it will cost the party establishing the service Rs 2.40 / minute. Compare this to OnNet [same network] Calls from anywhere in India at Rs 1 for every 3 minutes 🙂 Bingo business houses want to save on this and thus we consumers have to suffer.

At first, I thought this got to be streamlined during the number portability, but subsequent research showed? its all together a different issue as we need to know the Interconnect charges and how they can be brought down to ultimately help the 350 mn wireless users in India 🙂 Feel free to share your thoughts.