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Dhaka Tribune

Mobile phone refilling cap awaits Telecom Division’s nod

Update : 31 Dec 2015, 08:00 PM

The decision on refilling a prepaid cellphone account with not over TK500 a day will be sent to the Posts and Telecommunications Division soon.

In the face of strong opposition by all mobile operators to the decision, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has resorted to the telecom division for its consent, a BTRC source said. 

The cellphone operators on the other hand proposed to increase the daily prepaid cap to TK2,000 and refill at best 20 times a day, added the source.

According to a BTRC official, after a series of meeting over the last two days with all mobile operators and Association of Mobile Telecom operator of Bangladesh (AMTOB), the regulatory body is going to send the decision to the telecommunication division for the final nod. 

On Monday, the regulator issued the directives to all cellphone companies with immediate effect. 

The cap on daily prepaid amount for a single mobile phone number comes to prevent illegal overseas calls. 

Referring to an operator’s view, another official of the commission said those involved with illegal VoIP calls usually prepay a small amount of TK50 while they refill 30 to 50 times a day.  

They added that confining the prepayment to only Tk500 a day will ultimately deprive subscribers of availing a number of offers given by the operators.

It will also create hassle to the valued subscribers to avail certain packages if they fail to make a number of fixed prepaid amounts at one go.

Last year, BTRC had a meeting with all operators through AMTOB on refilling, and became convinced about the latter’s prepayment proposal on raising it to Tk2,000. 

But the BTRC’s recently issued guideline on prepaid amount ran counter to its earlier standpoint. 

Mobile phone operators have a good number of bundles and Internet products approved by BTRC, which cost more than Tk500.  

A high-up of the commission said just after three days of the directives, the commission faced a dilemma to take the final decision in this regard.   

Everyday, nearly 60 million minutes of international calls are made to and from Bangladesh. Around 30% calls are made through VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol. 

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