Airtel Removes Cap On Free Outgoing Call To Other Networks
Advertising banners for Bharti Airtel Ltd. are displayed on a wall behind a roadside mobile phone sim card vendor in Hyderabad. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Airtel Removes Cap On Free Outgoing Call To Other Networks

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Telecom operator Bharti Airtel Ltd. has removed cap from free outgoing calls on other networks under its new plans for pre-paid customers that came into effect from Dec. 3.

The company had earlier capped outgoing calls to network of other telecom operator to 1,000 minutes in case of plans with 28 days validity, 3,000 in 84 days validity plans and 12,000 in 365 days validity plan. Beyond this limit, customers were required to pay 6 paisa per minute for outgoing calls.

“From tomorrow, enjoy unlimited calling to any network in India with all our unlimited plans. No conditions apply,” Bharti Airtel said in a tweet on Friday.

The company on Dec. 1 announced new plans under which call and data charges became dearer for its pre-paid customers by up to 50 percent from Dec. 3.

Also read: Bharti Airtel To Gain At Cost Of Vodafone Idea, Say Brokerages

The company had announced new plans in "unlimited"category with 2 days, 28 days, 84 days, 365 days validity which on the back of the envelope calculations showed higher price of up to 50 percent.

Bharti Airtel increased its entry level unlimited plan with a year long validity by about 50 percent to Rs 1,499, with 24 GB of data, in place of Rs 998 plan which comes with 12 GB data usage limit.

The price of 365-days validity plan in the same category with daily data usage limit of 1.5 GB per day now costs 41.2 percent more at Rs 2,398.

The company also announced three new plans - Rs 219 with 28 days validity offering 1 GB per day, Rs 399 and Rs 449 plan with 56 days validity each, offering 1.5 GB and 2 GB data usage, respectively.

With the removal of limit, Airtel's new 399 plans with 56 days validity becomes cheaper than that of Reliance Jio plan at same price.

The move from both the companies follows Supreme Court judgement on adjusted gross revenue.

Bharti Airtel has posted a staggering Rs 23,045 crore net loss for the second quarter ended September 30, due to provisioning of Rs 28,450 crore in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling on statutory dues.

According to government data, the liabilities in the case of Bharti Airtel add up to nearly Rs 35,586 crore, of which Rs 21,682 crore is licence fee and another Rs 13,904.01 crore is the spectrum usage charge dues (excluding the dues of Telenor and Tata Teleservices).

The government is currently not considering any proposal on waiver of penalties and interest on outstanding licence fee based on adjusted gross revenue, or on extending the timelines for telecom companies to pay up their statutory dues.

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