Farmers ‘porting’ mobile connections in large numbers

Boycotting Jio in protest against farm laws

Farmers ‘porting’ mobile connections in large numbers

A farmer clicks pictures with his mobile phone during the ongoing agitation over new farm laws, at Ghazipur border in New Delhi. PTI

Sukhmeet Bhasin

Tribune News Service

Bathinda, December 28

A large numbers of protesting farmers are reportedly porting their mobile phone connections from Jio to other companies in protest against the three farm laws.

Even other mobile companies have started holdings camps at farmers protest and people are getting their connection changed.

The farmers are alleging that the Narendra Modi government has enacted the new farm laws only to benefit big corporate houses. Irked over which, they have started porting their mobile network connection from Jio to other companies in protest.

Speaking to The Tribune over phone, Baljit Singh, IT wing head of Kisan Ekta Morcha, said, “We have given a call to boycott Jio sims around 10 days ago. Since then more than seven lakh Jio connections have been ported to other networks.”

He said, “This is the estimate we have made from our state-level, district-level and block-level farmer unions committees and for officials figure, we have written to Airtel to give us exact figures about the number of people ported from Jio to their network in four states and we will ask figures from Vodafone-Idea as well.”

He added that they had started a campaign boycott Jio and were getting a good response. The mobile companies have also set up camps at the protest sites, where on daily basis large number of farmers are getting their connection ported from Jio.

He claimed that Jio has faced huge loss due to this campaign and irked over which they had lodged a complaint against Airtel and Idea with TRAI.

Jagsir Singh Jhumba, a BKU Ugrahan leader, said, “A large number of farmers have ported their Jio connections to other mobile network in protest as few days back. Another mobile service provider organised a camp at Jeeda toll plaza and around 150 protesters had ported their

connections.”

Further, he added, “31 farmers unions have now taken a decision that they would not damage mobile towers as it is affecting their protest.”

Apart from this, farmers at many places had cut the power supply to Jio mobile towers. Few days back, villagers had disconnected the power supply to the mobile tower in Bhaini Bhaga village in Mansa and Behman Diwana village in Bathinda.

Few days back, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd has written a letter to the telecom regulator, alleging that rivals Bharti Airtel Ltd and Vodafone

Idea Ltd (Vi) are carrying out unethical and anti-competitive mobile number porting to capitalise on the ongoing farmers’ protest. To counter Jio, Airtel and Vi have called the allegations “baseless”, urging the regulator to dismiss them.

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