Trai extends deadline for comments on net neutrality

Amid debate on net neutrality, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on Wednesday extended the last date for receiving comments on its paper on differential data pricing by about a week to January 7.

“We have extended it to January 7 mainly due to request from telecom industry bodies,” Trai chairman R S Sharma said. As per the earlier order, the deadline for comments on the paper was to  end on Wednesday. Differential pricing on data services is an important aspect of net neutrality.

The Trai also has extended date for counter comments to January 14, which was earlier set to close on January 7.

“On the request of the stakeholders, the last date for receipt of written comments/views has been extended up to January 7 and counter comments, if any, up to January 14. It has also been decided that no request for any further extension of time for submission of comments/counter comments shall be entertained,” the Trai said in a statement.

Although the paper by the Trai does not mention or use the term net neutrality, it details the idea of zero-rating platforms that have stirred up a big debate on the issue across the country. The Trai paper mentions some plans which amount to differential tariffs of the telecom service providers who offer zero or discounted tariffs to certain contents of certain websites or applications or platforms.

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