SSTL to finalise legal action against licence cancellation
Telecom player Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL) will soon finalise its legal course of action in the wake cancellation of its licences by the Supreme Court.
New Delhi: Telecom player Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL) will soon finalise its legal course of action in the wake cancellation of its licences by the Supreme Court.
"We are thinking about legal strategy at this stage. We are in the last days of finalising the options," SSTL, President and CEO Vsevolod Rozanov told reporters here. SSTL operates its telecom services under the MTS brand in India.
SSTL had filed petition in Supreme Court seeking review on its judgement of cancelling its 21 telecom licences but the petition was rejected (rpt) rejected by the court. The apex court on February had cancelled 122 licences, including 21 of SSTL, on the ground that they were issued in a "totally arbitrary and unconstitutional" manner.
Parent company Sistema JSFC of Sistema has notified Government of dispute under Bilateral Investment Treaty asking it to come out with solution acceptable to parties in the treaty within six months. This time period ends on August 20.
The CDMA mobile service provider on Wednesday said company has been penalised by Supreme Court for acting as per government policy.
"If there is a Government policy, we do not have any way to double check it. We have been found guilty for working as per the policy. We find it unfair," Rozanov said.
He added that there was no suggestions or findings in report of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) about CDMA spectrum or SSTL in particular.
"Again there was one Judge panel (one man committee) which looked in to whole but did not find anything wrong with us," Rozanov said.
He further said that consequence of licence cancellation is going to have huge consequence not only on the company or the telecom industry but also on the society at large.
"We will face huge consequence not as a company but as I would dare to say as a society because we speak of 100 million customers, tens of thousand direct employees, up to hundred thousand indirect employees. We are talking about a huge (telecom) ecosystem," Rozanov said.
At present, Sistema Shyam has around 3,500 direct and 3 lakh trade partners in India.
As per Supreme Court ruling, MTS India will be unable to operate after June 2 if the government is unable to allocate spectrum to the company.
As per the ruling, spectrum has to be allocated to any company in future through auction process only and which Department of Telecom says will take 400 days time to conclude.
SSTL CEO said that spectrum auction should be conducted without delay so that there is no interruption of services.
"I don't sense any particular conspiracy. No one is interested in business getting interrupted. Government is not interested because it will lose revenue. There are plenty of consequence for trade partners," Rozanov said.