The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh launched Mobile Number Portability (MNP) Service in the country here today by making inaugural call to Kapil Sibal, the Union Minister of Communications & IT from a ported number. Congratulating the Telecom Sector for the introduction of MNP and for being the fastest growing telecom market in the world, the Prime Minister said that the MNP is a shining example of how our telecommunications services have helped to widen human choices in a very important area of nation's economic activity. Telecommunications provide a key tool for socio-economic transformation of our rural areas, he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Kapil Sibal said that though India has introduced Mobile Number Portability relatively late vis-à-vis other developed countries but at the same time it has done so by adopting latest technologies and methodology. India has now joined the band wagon of advanced countries like USA, UK, China etc. in providing the MNP. He further stated that seeing the size of the country, number of subscribers & their growth rate and the number of operators per Licensed Service Area, there will be hardly any country with a network of so much complexity where MNP has been implemented.
Implementation of MNP will not only give wider choices to the Indian subscribers but will also compel Service providers to offer innovative, affordable and competitive Tariff plans for the benefit of the masses
He also said that commitment made at the time of pilot launching in Haryana in Nov'2010 has been kept today because of single minded efforts of all concerned. Congratulating engineers for the great job done, he said that making solution for the complex situation was possible only because of them.
Mobile Number Portability (MNP) Service will allow subscribers to retain their existing Mobile Telephone Number even when they switch from one access service provider to another irrespective of mobile technology or from one technology to another technology of the same or any other access service provider within the same service area.
The MNP Service was initially launched in Haryana Licensed Service Area on 25.11.2010 which served as a pilot and helped resolve all problems in the countrywide implementation. Subsequently, a phase-wise migration plan of networks in all the other Service Areas was worked out by DOT in coordination with Service Providers.
During the migration process, validation of technical parameters was carried out for successful and smooth migration of the networks of various Service Areas. Technical migration activity has been completed as planned on 19.01.2011 which has completed the ground work for commencement of MNP Service on a commercial basis from 20.01.2011.
In his welcome address, Sachin Pilot, the Minister of State for Communications & IT, said that after launch of MNP subscribers can change service providers keeping the same number. This is both threat and opportunity for the service providers.
The Secretary (DoT), R. Chandrashekhar said on the occasion that the countrywide launch of MNP marks a watershed in the history of the telecom sector in India. Competition is set to intensify both on cost and quality making customer the king. He thanked the Prime Minister for making 750 million Indian subscribers the king.
From today mobile subscribers in all service areas across the country have the choice of selecting their telecom service provider within the Licensed Service Area without changing their number provided a minimum period of 90 days has elapsed after subscription to the mobile service of the current service provider.
For availing this facility the subscriber has to generate a unique porting code (UPC) by sending an SMS (PORT Mobile number) to 1900. With this UPC, the subscriber has to do all the formalities of registering as a new subscriber and present the UPC to the new service provider. In J&K, the pre-paid subscriber shall call to 1900 and get the UPC from the operator.
90 days time is required to be completed with the existing service provider before applying for porting. Porting has to be completed within 7 working days except for J&K, Assam and North East Service Areas where 15 days time has been prescribed. TRAI has put a ceiling of Rs. 19/- on porting charges which the new service provider may collect from the subscriber.
Post-paid subscribers before making the porting request, have to make sure that their last bill has been paid failing which the request for change to a new service provider shall be rejected. In the case of pre-paid subscriber any balance amount left will not be carried forward when the number is transferred to the new service provider.