DoT Accepts Proposal On ‘0’ Prefix For All Calls From Landlines To Mobile Phones
A commuter uses a mobile phone while travelling by train in Mumbai, India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

DoT Accepts Proposal On ‘0’ Prefix For All Calls From Landlines To Mobile Phones

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Callers will soon be required to add '0' prefix for making calls from landlines to mobile phones in the country, with the telecom department asking telecom companies to make necessary arrangements by Jan. 1 to implement the new system.

The department has accepted sectoral regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s recommendation for having the '0' prefix for such calls, a move that will create sufficient numbering space for telecom services.

The Department of Telecom in a circular on `modification of dialing pattern from fixed line numbers to cellular mobile numbers' said in order to ensure adequate numbering resources for fixed line and mobile services, TRAI’s recommendations dated May 29, 2020 have been accepted by the Department.

"Following may be implemented...Fixed-to-mobile calls shall be dialed with prefix '0'. Suitable announcement may be fed in the fixed line switches to apprise the fixed line subscribers about the requirement of dialing the prefix '0' for all fixed-to-mobile calls," DoT said in a circular dated Nov. 20.

This announcement should be played whenever a subscriber dials a fixed-to-mobile call without prefixing '0', it said.

"All the fixed line subscribers should be provided with ‘0’ dialing facility, that is, STD dialing facility," said the circular posted on DoT's website.

DoT said that time till Jan. 1 is allowed to all the telecom service providers to implement this new system.

"Compliance of the same may be intimated," DoT said.

It is pertinent to mention here that the TRAI in May this year had recommended dialing prefix '0' for a call from fixed line number to mobile number.

The regulator had, however, stated that the introduction of a dialing prefix for a particular type of call is not akin to increasing the number of digits in the telephone number.

TRAI had then also stated that this change in dialing pattern will generate 2,544 million additional numbering resources for mobile services to cater to the future requirements.

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