Getting Connected to a Landline in India

Find out how to get your new home connected to the landline telephone service in India…

The most competitive providers are state-owned BSNL, Tata Indicom, Airtel and Reliance. Before taking a subscription with a telephone company, it is worth shopping around and comparing international calling tariffs.

It generally takes between two and five days after contacting a company for a connection to be set up. New customers can visit the chosen company’s nearest office or arrange for a representative to visit their home with the required application forms and to collect the documents needed.

Two pieces of documentation are required to set up a landline account:

  • Proof of address – a lease agreement, electricity or telephone bill, or bank or credit card statement will suffice. It should not be more than three months old (except for the lease agreement)
  • Proof of identity – a passport, PAN card or driving licence

A refundable deposit of between Rs1,000 and Rs5,000 will also be required.

Bills are usually sent at the end of the month and can be paid online or in person at one of the company’s office.

The major landline providers include:

Making a Local Call

To call a landline number in the same city, dial the seven- or eight-digit number (without the area code). To call a mobile number in the same state, dial the ten-digit number.

Long-distance Calls

To call a landline number in another city, dial the standard trunk dialling (STD) code for the relevant city before the number. For example, to call a number in Nagpur, it would be necessary to dial “0712” before the landline number.

  • The Indian Yellow Pages website features a list of STD codes: Click here

To call a mobile phone in another state, it is necessary to add a “0” before the ten-digit number.

Public Telephones

Public telephones and phone booths can be found almost everywhere in India. They are usually run by local grocers or shopkeepers. Public telephones are usually yellow or red and are operated by inserting an Rs1 coin. A phone booth run by a shopkeeper is called a public call office (PCO). They allow users to make national and international calls. The handsets are linked to a meter that records the length and cost of a call.