In a major setback to Reliance Jio users, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has ordered the telecom major to withdraw its Summer Surprise plan that offered free services to users for three months.  

The company had on March 31 announced that users who pay Rs 303 (or higher) for the the Jio Summer Surprise offer will get an additional 3 months of complimentary services. But now, thanks to the telecom regulator’s directive, the offer will be discontinued and no new subscribers can join the scheme. 

However, the customers who had already subscribed the offer will continue to avail its benefits. 

Here is what the company tweeted:

According to a report by The Economic Times, TRAI’s order which came after a meeting with Jio officials earlier on Thursday, will come as a relief to rivals. 

Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular have been struggling thanks to Jio’s offers that have offered free services since inception. The telecom regulator’s order is also expected to restore pricing rationality in the next few months.

Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio on March 31 announced it had acquired an unprecedented 7.2 crore paid subscribers, and extended its deadline to April 15 for migrating other subscribers to its paid offer. 

Jio launched the inaugural free voice and data plan in September last year, and in December extended the freebies till March 31, 2017, much to the ire of other operators who alleged that such freebies not only hit their profitability and disrupted the market but were also against the regulations.

(With inputs from PTI)