Legal opinion sought on cancelling 83 new telecom licences
The government is seeking legal opinion to cancel as many as 83 telecom licences for the failure of service providers to roll out their networks as per their agreements between 2006 and 2008, officials have said.
Last month, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), had recommended outright cancellation of 53 licences and that legal opinion be sought in respect of 30 others due to non-compliance of roll-out obligations.
"It is proposed to take a final decision on the recommendations of TRAI after taking into consideration legal advice in this regard," Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology Milind Deora told parliament last week.
Show-cause notices were also issued to seven service providers for non-compliance of the norms in some areas -- Aircel, Dishnet Wireless, Etisalat DB, Idea Cellular, Sistema Shyam Teleservices, Spice Communications and Vodafone Essar Spacetel.
Originally, the watchdog had recommended the cancellation of 43 licences issued between 2006 and 2008 and seriously consider similar action after legal examination on 31 others for non-utilisation of spectrum and the resultant loss of revenue to the exchequer.
The government had granted 145 licences between 2006 and 2008.