‘Merge Maha, Mumbai telecom circles to reduce cell phone bills’

Mumbai : In an effort aimed at reducing bills of cell phone consumers, 10 parliamentarians from the state have written to Union Telecom Minister Ravishankar Prasad, asking for unification of Mumbai and Maharashtra telecom circles.

“While all other states with mega cities are treated as single circle, Mumbai and Maharashtra continue to be treated as two different circles and users from both the circles have to pay national roaming charges while travelling within the state,” the parliamentarians pointed out in their letter to the Telecom minister and demanded merger of these two circles.

“Kolkata-West Bengal, Chennai-Tamil Nadu, Hyderabad-Andhra Pradesh, etc. are all treated as a single circle (state). Only in Maharashtra, Mumbai and Maharashtra are treated as two different circles and users have to pay the national roaming charges,” they argued.

They further said the telecom companies are generating “additional revenue/double revenue” from consumers by keeping Mumbai and Maharashtra two separate circles.

“The Ministry/Industry/TRAI was supposed to make whole of India as one circle but for various reasons the execution of ‘One India’ has been delayed,” the letter read.

The delegation of BJP and Shiv Sena MPs was led by Kirit Somaiya and Gopal Shetty, and included Nana Patole, Chintaman Wanga, Ravindra Gaikwad, Shrirang Barne, Sanjay Dhotre, Vinayak Raut, Kapil Patil and Sadashiv Lokhande.

According to an MP, if their request is accepted, consumer bills will reduce by Rs 80 to Rs 200 depending on number of inter-circle calls.

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