Delhi High Court Issue Notice To Vodafone Idea, Jio And Airtel On Patym’s Plea
An advertising balloon for PayTM online payment is displayed at a store in Ooty, Tamil Nadu. Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg

Delhi High Court Issue Notice To Vodafone Idea, Jio And Airtel On Patym’s Plea

The Delhi High Court asked telecom operators and the sector regulator to respond to a plea by Paytm seeking Rs 100 crore in damages for failing to stop the phishing calls.

One97 Communications Pvt., the parent of financial services firm, argued that fraudsters claiming to be representatives of Paytm are spamming customers through SMSes or calls. They get the customers to part with sensitive data, resulting transfer of money from their accounts. BloombergQuint has reviewed a copy of the petition.

A bench headed by Chief Justice DN Patel issued a notice to Vodafone Idea Ltd., Bharti Airtel Ltd., Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. and Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. to respond.

Paytm argued that the law makes it the responsibility of the telecom service providers to prevent such frauds and deter fraudsters. These frauds, it said, are a result of the operators violating the Telecommunication Commercial Communication Customer Preference Regulations, 2018, it said. Specifically, Paytm said in its petition, the regulations require service providers to:

  • Verify purported telemarketers seeking registration with such telcos before granting them access to the telcos’ customer database.
  • Refrain from issuing headers or allow SMS content purporting to be from petitioners or its related entities from unauthorised Registered Telemarketers, and
  • Take immediate remedial action against all fraudulent RTMs.

The company said the alleged frauds have caused significant damage to the brand of Paytm, resulting in customers losing faith in the company. Operators failed to conduct proper verification before registering telemarketers, which enables frauds and phishing, it said.

Paytm has made the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India a party in the case, saying that it failed to take action against violation of rules by the carriers. The regulator also has to file its response.

The Delhi High Court will take up the matter next on June 24.

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