The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has extended the prepaid mobile service in Jammu and Kashmir, North East, and Assam service area on a continuous basis from April 1 subject to existing verification conditions.
DoT in its directive dated 31 March to all CMTS/UASL/UL licensees has informed the extension. The prepaid mobile services in these areas will be operating on a continuous basis. Existing subscriber verification conditions, security conditions/safeguards, penal provisions etc, stipulated by the Licensor/Government will continue to be in force.
DoT further stated that existing roaming facilities between the pre-paid subscribers of Assam, North East service areas and the rest of the country will remain operational on a continuous basis.
The current restrictions on roaming facilities between the pre-paid subscribers of the J&K service area (which includes UT of J&K and UT of Ladakh) and the rest of the country shall remain in force.
In 2009, the Department of Telecom had banned pre-paid mobile services in these areas on the grounds of national security. The ban was removed next year but tight restrictions were put in place to ensure verification of existing and new subscribers.
In 2015, DoT gave a 2-year extension of pre-paid services in these service areas. Further extensions were on a year to year security review. Given the disruption due to COVID-19, DoT has this time around extended the services on a continuous basis instead of a 1-year extension.