Here’s how Reliance Jio is compensating users for 6 paise per minute calling charges

Reliance Jio has introduced special top-up vouchers to compensate users for the new interconnect usage charges.

All you need to know about Reliance Jio’s top-up voucher
All you need to know about Reliance Jio’s top-up voucher (Indranil Bhoumik/mint)

Reliance Jio is no longer offering free voice calls to its subscribers. The operator on Wednesday announced charging 6 paise per minute on voice calls made to rival networks such as Airtel and Vodafone. Reliance Jio, however, introduced special top-up vouchers to compensate users for the interconnect usage charges (IUC).

Note that Reliance Jio's new charges aren't applicable on all Jio to Jio calls, all incoming calls, Jio to landline calls, and calls made using apps like WhatsApp. The operator says its new IUC top-up vouchers will ensure there's no increase in tariff for customers. Here are the details of these top-up vouchers.

The 10 IUC top-up voucher will give you 124 minutes for calls on non-Jio numbers. It's also bundled with 1GB of data. With 20 voucher, Reliance Jio subscribers get 249 IUC minutes and 2GB of data. For 50, Jio users will be eligible for 656 IUC minutes and 5GB of data. The 100 top-up gives 1,362 IUC minutes and 10GB of data.

Earlier, Reliance Jio said that it had paid nearly 13,500 crore as NET IUC charges to the other operators in the last three years. The company also backed the decision to abolish IUC charges by January,2020.

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"We are hopeful that the IUC charge will be done away with as per the current regulation and that this temporary charge will come to an end by 31st December 2019 and consumers will not have to pay this charge thereafter. In the meanwhile, consumers can continue to enjoy the additional data entitlement in lieu of the IUC top-up vouchers so that there is no effective tariff increase till 31st December 2019," it said in a statement.

Airtel, however, defended the IUC charges. In a statement, the operator said, "The telecom industry is in a state of deep financial stress since the last three years with several operators having gone bankrupt and thousands of jobs having being lost. The IUC is determined based on the cost per call. Given the massive 2G customer base in India the cost of the call at 6 paise is already significantly below the real cost of completing the call."