Now, Airtel Moves CCI Against Jio Over ‘Predatory Pricing’
Accuses Rel Jio of abusing dominant position in its counter complaint
New Delhi: Bharti Airtel has filed a counter complaint with the antitrust regulator against bitter rival Reliance Jio Infocomm, accusing the latter of "abusing dominant position" and of "predatory pricing" with the intention to kill competition.
In a complaint to the Compe-
tition Commission of India (CCI), reviewed by ET, Airtel said Jio is a dominant player in the telecom space as “it is a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd, which is the largest enterprise in India in terms of size, revenues, assets and value”.
It noted that Jio has made investments of over .₹ 1.60 lakh
crore in the telecom space and had spent a staggering .₹ 47,000 crore towards spectrum alone, and that Jio has abused its dominant position by indulging in predatory pricing by providing free service since the launch of its beta testing in December 2015.
“During the test phase itself it added approximately five million users and pursuant to its launch date on 5th September 2016 till 31st December 2016 and it has grossed 72.5 million customers,” Airtel said.
“The free service provided by RJIL is predatory in nature, which, in accordance with Section 4 of the Competition Act, ex-facie constitutes abuse of dominant position,” it added.
Airtel has argued that no other telco in India or overseas is offering services free of cost or any free unlimited voice calling. “The same is predatory” and the objective of predatory pricing by Jio “is to eliminate competition”.
It added that Jio plans to create a monopoly for itself.