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Consumers protection in telecom: A right step taken

Published on 1st Dec, Edition 48, 2014


Rights of the telecom clients, particularly the cellular subscribers in Pakistan, have lately been under focus mainly in relation to unverified SIMs and unlawful use of SIMs by other users without the information of the genuine subscriber. However, it has been believed that a lot of telecom clients are still unaware of their rights and the mechanism to defend consumer rights. Protection of consumers’ interest is one of the activities of PTA (Pakistan Telecommunication Authority) as laid down in the Pakistan Telecommunication (Re-organization) Act, 1996.

Since 1996 to 2009, no regulations were in place to protect and safeguard the interests and rights of the telecom users. However, during 2009, PTA released the telecom consumers protection regulations, 2009 (the regulations), which were afterward adjusted during 2010, 2011 and 2012. The Regulations not only provide protection of rights but also prescribe structure to redress grievances of the users and fines for infringement of the rights through the operators.



During July 2012 to June 2013, a register nationwide cellular mobile outgoing traffic of 294.2 billion minutes was produced. Chiefly, cellular mobile national outgoing traffic to cellular network has explained a tremendous progress and explained a rise of 52.51 percent, which is 12.4 percent larger progress for the same period of last year and was 192.9 billion minutes for the FY13.

Global outgoing traffic from cellular network has gradually risen and explained a healthy progress of 17.92 percent by the close of June 2013 contrary to sharp fall of 28.69 percent for the same period of FY12. Worldwide incoming traffic on cellular network somewhat was fell and explained a pessimistic progress of 10.02 percent for the FY13 as against to FY11. The fall in worldwide incoming traffic could be because of rise in APC (access promotion contribution) alter in FY13 from 1.25 US cents to 2.90 US cents, which discouraged LDI operators to give lower settlement rates to attract extra incoming traffic in Pakistan. Average cellular mobile subscriber in the country, is making voice calls of 203 minutes/month whereas, producing 214 SMS. An incredible progress of 43.97 percent in voice traffic average/user has been recorded while development of 7 percent in SMS use /subscriber was mentioned.

Biometric verification
Out of Karachi 33057 49.9
West 3434 5.2
Malir 4873 7.4
Central 6913 10.4
South 7425 11.2
East 10594 16.0
Source: CPLC

According to Pakistan telecommunication authority, No one can purchase a Mobile SIM with manual registration. The authority took this step due to law and order condition of the country. Furthermore, purchasing a SIM in the country is going secure through Biometric verification system. This plan has started working since August this year, the sale of mobile phone SIMs in the country will be done by biometric system. Contrary to the previous system of 789, this latest system assists access the information of a SIM purchaser from NADRA database at run time. Through this system customers need to put a thumb impression on the machine, then machine will get their data and will verify them. If they are not able to verify their identity, they can’t purchase SIM. Biometric machine is freely available at franchises, customer care centers and authorized outlets and shops.

Mobile phone in lecture

Presently, mostly students have access to utilizing cellular phones in Pakistan. Students take their mobile along with them during lectures, which creates distract and disturbance them from their studies. Even they message one another; they share naughty foul/forward messages and send comments on their educators while sitting in the class. Unfortunately if teachers halt them of utilizing mobile phones in the class they misbehave with their teachers and don’t afraid from teachers and head of the department. Due to huge use of cell phones their education presentation is affected and they attain less mark in examinations. Parents should keep an eye on there children cell phone usage, but don’t be a mobile inspector but just like a friend check there cell phone contacts, received calls details and messages or without taking it in their notice. This act will help them utilize the better and effective means of mobile and how helpful the usage of it will groom them for their better future.


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