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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 February, 2005, 06:23 GMT
India seeks curbs on mobile spam
Mobile phone users in India
India is the second fastest growing mobile phone market in the world
India's Supreme Court has urged the government to crack down on unsolicited calls and 'spam' text messages sent to mobile phone users.

The Court wants the Indian Parliament to introduce a law prohibiting unsought telemarketing calls, arguing that they are an invasion of privacy.

The Court issued the verdict after hearing a lawsuit brought against telemarketers by a New Delhi resident.

India is one of the fastest growing mobile markets, with 95m subscribers.

Privacy concern

The Court has sent notices explaining its decision to India's telecoms regulator, telecoms operators and several multinational banks, believed to be active in telemarketing loans and credit cards.

It is a remarkable case that highlights the failure to preserve the privacy of mobile phone users
Pavan Duggal, Supreme Court prosecutor

The Court has sent notices explaining its decision to India's telecoms regulator, telecoms operators and several multinational banks, believed to be active in telemarketing loans and credit cards.

"It is a remarkable case that highlights the failure of the government and the telecoms regulator in the country to preserve the privacy of mobile phone users," Pavan Duggal, a Supreme Court prosecutor, told Reuters.

"The government and the telecom regulator should proactively frame rules to ban such calls as early as possible."

The Government did not immediately respond to the Court's verdict.

The Supreme Court can only advise the government so legislation is not guaranteed to follow.

Unlike most western countries, India does not have a system enabling mobile phone users to 'opt-out' from receiving unsolicited calls.


SEE ALSO:
India widens access to telecoms
02 Feb 05 |  Business
Mobile phone sales still booming
01 Dec 04 |  Business
Mobile gaming takes off in India
27 Nov 04 |  Technology


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