Poonam Singh

New Delhi: Telecom subscribers will have to prefix '0' as they call from a landline to any mobile number starting January 1, 2021.

The decision has been taken up in order to ensure adequate numbering resources for fixed line and mobile services. Telecom regulator TRAI had recommended the move in May this year.

A DoT's November 20 circular said that all the fixed line subscribers should be provided with '0' dialing facility, STD dialing facility.

All telecom service operators have been allowed time till January 1 to implement the directive.

DoT said that suitable announcements may be fed in the fixed line switches to apprise the fixed line subscribers about the requirement of dialing the prefix '0' for all fixed to mobile calls. This announcement should be played whenever a subscriber dials a fixed to mobile call without prefixing '0'.

In a circular regarding the modification of the dialing pattern from landline numbers to mobile numbers, the recommendation of TRAI dating back to March this year has been accepted to make sure there is adequate numbering resources for both the services (fixed-line and mobile).

The regulator had, however, said that the introduction of dialling a prefix for a particular type of call is not akin to increasing the number of digits in the telephone number.

TRAI also said that introducing this new pattern will add 2,544 million additional numbering resources for mobile service providers.

(With Agency Inputs)