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TRAI’s mobile number portability rules come into effect: here’s everything you need to know

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) had announced a new process for mobile number portability (MNP) in December last year. The new rules will finally come into effect from today. The regulations have made the process of changing one’s telecom operator easier than before. Previously it would take 15 days to complete the mobile number porting (MNP) process but now it will be completed in three to five days. The telecom regulator will charge Rs 6.46 as a transaction fee for each porting request. It’s worth noting that in Jammu & Kashmir, Assam and the North-East, it will take 15 working days. 

As per the new TRAI guidelines, users should be eligible to port their number to a new operator. A unique porting code (UPC) will be generated for a subscriber who requests MNP. The UPC will be generated only when the user passes the eligibility criteria as mentioned below:

  1. Users need to have an active connection with the mobile operator for at least 90 days 
  2. A postpaid subscriber has to clear all the outstanding dues as per the billing cycle 
  3. The number will not be eligible for portability if the user has made a request to change the ownership of their mobile number 
  4. TRAI states that there should not be any pending contractual obligations to be fulfilled by the subscriber as per the exit clause provided in the subscriber agreement. The mobile number should not be sub-judice and also the porting of mobile number is not prohibited by the court of law. 

The UPC will be issued to the user within five minutes of placing the request if they meet the eligibility criteria. Users have to SMS ‘PORT’ followed by their 10-digit mobile number to 1900 to receive the UPC through SMS. The UPC is valid for four days except for J&K, Assam and North-East where it will remain valid for 30 days. Users need to visit the nearest customer service centre of the operator they want to port and fill out the Customer Acquisition Form (CAF) and Porting Form along with providing the UPC code. Users also have to submit the necessary KYC documents to begin the MNP process. A new SIM will be issued that will be activated within three days. 

TRAI says that porting to other operators within the same circle will be done within three working days. And porting to another circle will take up to five days. Corporate mobile number users need to submit a valid authorisation letter issued by the corporate entity for porting a number.  

Users who wish to withdraw their porting request can SMS ‘CANCEL’ followed by a space and their 10-digit mobile number to 1900. The porting request withdrawal SMS should be sent within 24-hours of submitting the porting request. 

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