“Connections of all the illegal handsets added to the network will be forced out of the network from 1 October,” it added.

Customers have been urged to buy any new handset after verifying it by typing “KYD<space>15 digit IMEI number” and sending the message to 16002 while a reply SMS will confirm the legitimacy of the handset, the release said.

The people procured or bought handsets from abroad legally or got as gift have been urged to register their handsets by visiting the website before using those, it said.

The BTRC also urged the importers/local manufacturers of handsets not to import or produce illegal handsets and the sellers urged not to sell illegal mobile phones.

Noting that if anyone sells illegal handsets, s/he has to refund the price of the handset as per the customer’s claim, the telecom watchdog said, adding legal actions will be taken against the traders and manufacturers of illegal handsets.

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