MTNL will offer free roaming services to its subscribers from January 1. Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad made the announcement yesterday at an event to celebrate Good Governance Day. This scheme will allow subscribers to receive calls for free when they are traveling in the country. The state-run operator offers its services in Delhi and Mumbai, and subscribers currently have to pay for incoming calls whenever they leave these two cities. MTNL Chairman and Managing Director, N.K. Yadav, said that the company is even trying to implement the scheme before January 1 and is checking the technical details. The government wants to gradually achieve national free roaming under the National Telecom Policy, 2012.
In January 2014, BSNL and MTNL announced plans for free roaming services with BSNL announcing the services earlier this year. Last month, a report by PTI stated that MTNL was planning to launch free roaming services and said, “Telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad during a meeting of consultative committee attached to the ministry of communication and IT informed Members of Parliament (MPs) that MTNL is planning to launch free roaming soon. Moreover, MTNL has also increased minimum broadband speed to 2Mbps and is offering free broadband for one month to its landline customers.”
Last week, BSNL announced that it was reducing mobile rates for new customers by up to 80% for the first two months. These rates are applicable on per-second tariffs, as well as the per-minute business plan. The company is also attempting to improve its customer service by partnering with Aegis BPO, and has started monitoring complaints on social media.