Consumer Issues
How to get rid of telemarketers
Still receiving marketing calls and SMS? File a complaint against them either by calling a toll free number or via SMS. The penalty they face is strong.
 
After the Telecom Commercial Communication Customer Preference Regulations, 2010, it was expected that mobile subscribers will not receive unsolicited commercial communication (unwanted calls/SMS) from telemarketers from 27 September 2011 onwards. But the menace still continues and mobile users are being harassed by unwanted calls and SMS, albeit at lower frequency.
 
However, there is a small difference. Earlier, we used to receive calls or SMS from numbers that we could identify (after few calls). Now they are originating mostly from personal mobile numbers. For example, earlier we used to receive calls from numbers like 012466005000 (representation only) or similar such numbers. However, these days it can be any mobile number. And since most of the times, it is an unknown number; users are fooled into receiving the call or reading the message.
 
On its part, the TRAI has created the National Customer Preference Register (NCPR) that keeps records of subscriber preferences for receiving commercial communication. Under NCPR, there are two categories, fully blocked and partially blocked. If you do not want to receive any unwanted calls or SMS, then send an SMS START 0 to 1909. At present there are seven preferences to choose from for partially blocking unwanted calls or SMS. The user can opt to receive such communication based on her choice by sending a SMS for example START 4 to 1909 to receive messages on health products.
 
If despite registering for fully blocked category if you are receiving unwanted calls and messages, then you can file complaint against the telemarketer. You can also file complaint, if you are receiving such communication from categories other than you allowed. This is quite simple and easy. 
 
The subscriber can file complaint either by dialling 1909 (toll free) or sending SMS. When you dial the toll free number, you can either register the complaint through the customer care executive or through the Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS).
 
For this method, you would be required to provide particulars of the telemarketer, the telephone/ mobile number from which you received the call/SMS, date and time and a brief description of the call or SMS. After this, you will get a unique complaint number.
 
For registering the complaint via SMS, you need to send a SMS to 1909 (toll free) in the specified format.
 
"the unsolicited commercial communication, XXXXXXXXXX, dd/mm/yy"

Where XXXXXXXXXX – is the telephone number or header of the SMS, from which the unsolicited commercial communication has originated.
 
Here you would receive the complaint number via SMS. In both cases, you would be informed within seven days on the action taken on your complaint. You can also check registration status of your complaint through this link http://www.nccptrai.gov.in/nccpregistry/UccSearch.misc
 
Important thing to keep in mind is the complaint has to be registered from the telephone number on which unsolicited commercial communication has been received and the complaint must be made within three days of receipt of the unsolicited commercial communication.
 
According to the Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Thirteenth Amendment) Regulations, 2013, if the telemarketer is found to be not registered with the NCPR, then the service provider (mobile operator) is liable to pay financial disincentives of Rs5,000 on each complaint.
 
In addition, if the unwanted call or SMS contains reference to another telephone number or an entity like bank, insurance company or builder for which the commercial transaction is solicited, then telecom resources issued to the subscriber or entity is discontinued across all service provides after receiving a complaint, after serving notices each on the first and second complaint. 
 
For example, if you received marketing call from XYZ Bank or ABC Insurance Co, from numbers that are not registered as telemarketers, then your complaint and its follow up may lead to disconnection of all telephone/mobile connections provided to XYZ Bank or ABC Insurance across the country. 
 
If your issue is not resolved, then you may want to use the Right to Information (RTI) Act. File an application under the RTI and ask for daily progress, name and designations of officers who handled your complaint, the time frame to resolve such complaints, and the action taken on officials, who have failed to resolve the complaint within the stipulated time.
 
Another way to get rid of the telemarketers is to use an application on your smartphone. For example, TrueCaller and SPC (Super Private Conversation). TrueCaller allows the user to identify unknown callers and also block spam or unwanted calls. In addition, you also can mark a call as spam and report that helps other users of TrueCaller to avoid such calls. Only disadvantage is you will have to share you phone book with the app. TrueCaller is available for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone and BlackBerry devices.
 
SPC is an app for Android platform that blocks SMS and calls from unknown sources through a blacklist. In addition, the user can move private conversation to a private place inside the mobile device. The app is simple and easy to use and block unwanted SMS and calls.
 
Although, you can file a complaint against a telemarketer if you receive unwanted call or SMS, there is no respite from such communication on instant messengers like WhatsApp.  Although, you can block such number in WhatsApp, you need to open and read the message before knowing the identity of the sender. 
 
At present there are over 90 crore mobile subscribers in India. Low tariffs and direct reach to consumers has made SMS and direct calling as one of the most cost effective ways of selling services and products. However, telemarketing had brought with it serious issues of invasion of privacy and has become a major irritant to customers. Although, this is has come down tremendously, there still are some telemarketers, who are troubling subscribers through unwanted calls and SMS. However, you can now file complaint against such telecallers and teach them a lesson for disturbing you with their unwanted calls/SMS.

User

COMMENTS

Awadhesh

2 years ago

does not work. fake article,

Aarmin Banaji

2 years ago

The former got posted before I could add - Would appreciate the author writing again, with details a landline subscriber should follow to avoid this invasion of privacy.

Aarmin Banaji

2 years ago

Like all things being regulated by any government, this entire exercise is a joke.

The article does not even mention the plight of a landline subscriber and the path to any redressal.

Devang Vyas

2 years ago

I complained many times in past but received no response. I am thinking to use your RTI tip in future.

Thanks for article.

Parimal Shah

2 years ago

The approach of the TRAI is against the principle of natural justice right from the beginning.

Why should the onus be on a subscriber to register for DND instead of the other way round -
a subscriber may register for receiving commercial calls or sms if interested.

The approach was and is really 'Andher Nagri and Gandu raja"!

-Parimal

Suketu Shah

2 years ago

Super piece.Wl implement it imm.

Narendra Doshi

2 years ago

Tks Yogeshji for full details.

Simple Indian

2 years ago

Thanks for posting an elaborate procedure for the same, but pity it doesn't work at all. Have sent SMS with "COMP TEL NO...." dozens of times but only got some general response after a month or so stating that after "investigations" no issue with comp tel no. This just doesn't work.
Also, while Telecom operators are given 7 days to action on "START 0" or any other option, subscribers can't change preference for next 90 days. If all it takes is 7 days to activate or deactivate a NCPR preference, why should subscriber wait for 90 days to change preferences ? This seems a scam and TRAI seems hand-in-glove with telecom operators in such guidelines which are not customer-friendly.

SEBI seeks fresh clarification from Videocon d2h on IPO

As per the status on 9th January, SEBI was awaiting clarifications on the IPO of Videocon d2h, which provides direct-to-home TV services

 

Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has sought fresh clarifications from the merchant banker of Videocon d2h Ltd, the satellite television unit of Videocon Group, regarding its proposed Rs700-crore initial public offering (IPO).
 
Without disclosing the details of clarifications sought, SEBI said, "clarifications (are) awaited from Lead Manager" for the proposed public offer.
 
As per the latest weekly update to the processing status of draft offer documents filed with SEBI, the regulator has said clarifications are awaited on the IPO of Videocon d2h, which provides direct-to-home TV services, as on 9th January, this year.
 
The status is updated on a weekly basis by the regulator and the next update is due on 16 January 2015 and would be uploaded on SEBI's website on the next working day.
 
SEBI said it might issue observations on draft offer document within 30 days from the date of receipt of Videocon d2h's satisfactory reply to the clarification or additional information sought from them.
 
Prior to that, SEBI had sought clarification from Videocon d2h's lead manager Axis Capital earlier this month. Last communication between the regulator and merchant banker took place on 6th January this year.
 
The regulator had received the draft offer documents on 30 September 2014 through its lead manager.
 
The company's proposed IPO estimates to raise Rs700 crore. The company is also considering to mop up Rs50 crore through a pre-IPO placement of its shares to institutional investors.
 
While the company has not disclosed the total number of shares to be sold in IPO, the pre-IPO placement could be of 50 lakh shares.
 
The company plans to use the funds for "acquisition of set-top boxes, outdoor units and accessories thereof, repayment/prepayment of certain indebtedness and general corporate purposes."
 
Other players in the business include Tata Sky, Dish TV, Sun Direct and Airtel Digital TV.
 
This is the company's second attempt to enter the capital markets.
 
Earlier in December 2012, it had filed draft documents under the name 'Bharat Business Channel' with SEBI to raise Rs700 crore through an IPO. However, the company did not launch the same due to bad market conditions.
 

User

India to move ahead with river inter-linking project, says Naidu

According to Venkaiah Naidu, there may be voices in democracy, but the government will have to take up the river linking on a priority basis come what may

 

Notwithstanding concerns raised by environmentalists, the Indian government Tuesday said it will take up inter-linking of rivers on a priority basis "come what may" and that any "obstacles" which may come in the way would be addressed or removed.
 
"Some of our environmental friends are raising voices. There will be voices in democracy, let there be. But, they have answers also... We have to take up river linking on a priority basis come what may," Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said at a function to mark 'India Water Week'.
 
"Whatever obstacles come, that has to be addressed and they have to be removed," he went on to add.
 
He said an atmosphere needs to be created in the country so that river inter-linking becomes a people's movement.
 
Environmentalists have raised concerns over inter-linking of rivers, claiming that it would threaten the aquatic life and has no hydrological and ecological soundness.
 
Naidu said developed countries are "giving us lessons and sermons" and added, "We have to first develop, then we can give lessons to others."
 
Speaking about conservation of water, Naidu said his ministry is proposing to make water-harvesting mandatory for all local bodies.
 
"I am proposing in the coming days that all urban bodies should make it mandatory to have water harvesting system within their houses and farms. That is going to be the priority also," he said.
 
In his address, Minister of State for Environment Prakash Javadekar said that the water management for sustainable development should be considered on the backdrop of challenges posed by climate change.
 

User

We are listening!

Solve the equation and enter in the Captcha field.
  Loading...
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email

BUY NOW

The Scam
24 Year Of The Scam: The Perennial Bestseller, reads like a Thriller!
Moneylife Magazine
Fiercely independent and pro-consumer information on personal finance
Stockletters in 3 Flavours
Outstanding research that beats mutual funds year after year
MAS: Complete Online Financial Advisory
(Includes Moneylife Magazine and Lion Stockletter)