All landline users across India will now have to prefix a ‘0’ in order to make calls to a mobile number. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had announced back in November that landline users will need to dial ‘0’ before a mobile phone number for the call to go through. This new directive goes into effect starting today i.e Friday, January 15th. Telecom operators have been taking the necessary steps in order to inform their users of the new landline to mobile calling rule.

Airtel informed its customers on Wednesday that “effective January 15th, it would be mandatory to prefix ‘0’ before the mobile number while dialing from a landline,” The Economic Times reports. A similar announcement is expected from Vodafone-Idea, Reliance Jio, BSNL, and MTNL. 

It is important to note that prefixing ‘0’ is only required for landline to mobile phone calls and will not be necessary for landline to landline, mobile to landline, and mobile to mobile calls.

According to the DoT, this change in landline to mobile calls will free up sufficient numbering resources for mobile services due to the increase in mobile user base and fall in landline connections across India. “By making it mandatory to access mobile numbers in a service area from a fixed network by dialing prefix ‘0′, all the free sub-levels in levels ‘2′,’3′,’4′, and ‘6′, can also be used for mobile numbers. This change in dialling pattern will generate 2,544 million additional numbering resources for mobile services to cater to future requirements,” the DoT said back in November.