In the ongoing war of words, the Cellular Operators’ Association of India (COAI) has said Reliance Jio’s allegation against the association that it has acted arbitrarily, discriminatorily or as the mouthpiece of some members is misconceived.
In a letter written to Jio by the COAI on February 28, it said: “Your captioned notices are patently misconceived and based on assertions that are false to our knowledge. The Press Release expresses our concern and grievances against the TTO (Telecom Tariff Order) and the TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India).”
The letter further said: “It was issued in good faith in furtherance of our duty as an industry association inter alia to call attention to regulatory decisions that are detrimental to the growth and development of the telecom sector.”
A copy of the letter is available with the IANS.
Reliance Jio is also a member of the COAI.
The COAI said it is its duty to raise grave issues concerning the growth and development of the telecom sector. Further, it said the allegations against COAI Director General Rajan S Mathews are “uncalled for and in bad taste”.
The industry association further said the earlier Press Release issued by it was bona fide.
An aggrieved Reliance Jio on February 26 said the press statement issued by the COAI has failed to furnish the public apology that was demanded by Jio earlier in the ongoing war of words agitating the telecom sector.
In a letter to COAI Director General Rajan S. Mathews, Jio asserted that “Rather than take the requisite remedial action, the media statement not only fails to include a public apology for the injury to Reliance Jio’s reputation occasioned by the Press Release, but extends the campaign of falsehood and defamation that COAI and you have maintained against Reliance Jio”.
“By way of its legal notice, Reliance Jio had demanded that COAI and yourself issue a public apology and appropriate clarification in regard to false and defamatory statements contained in the Press Release,” Jio said in the letter dated February 26.
The COAI had on February 24 asserted that its differences were with the telecom regulator and not with any operator in particular.
Responding to Reliance Jio’s 48-hour ultimatum for a public apology for its “defamatory statements” wherein COAI had said it is likely to drag the telecom regulator to the court following its recent Telecom Tariff Order (TTO), COAI maintained that “Our differences are with the orders of the Regulator and not with any specific operator. Our intention is not to aggrieve any particular operator”.
Reliance had earlier termed COAI’s comments “defamatory” and in a letter to COAI on February 22 said: “COAI and Rajan Mathews (Director General, COAI) are hereby called upon to issue a public apology and issue appropriate clarification expressly regretting their callous and defamatory statements through a separate press release issued no later than 48 hours from receipt of this notice.”