The Supreme Court Of India Extends Time Limit For Fresh 2G Auction: [Report]

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A discussion over 2G scam has persisted since a last year in India and political maneuvers are still at the pinnacle. Finally, the Supreme Court of India has given some relaxations to Telecom operators, extended the deadline for the auction of 2G licenses from June to August 31, 2012. It’s well-known that the court cancelled all 122 licenses after hearing 2G scam petitions. The court asked to telecom operators—whose license were cancelled—to continue till September 7, 2012 without any interruptions. However, the court has rejected the Government’s plea to extend the fresh auction for 400 days across the country.

On the other sides, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has recommended auction price for 2G spectrum in 22 circles. The authority has laid down multiple rounds for the conduction of 2G spectrum auction. TRAI has recommended a reserve price for different bands such as operators will have to pay RS 3,622.18 crore on per MHz purchase in 1800 MHz band, while they will have to pay Rs 7244 crore and Rs 14000 crore in 800 and 900 MHz and 700 MHz bands respectively for every MHz purchase.  The telecom regulator has also proposed a limit of 5 MHz in each of the 22 circle on 1800 MHz band across the country.

This time, TRAI seems tenacious towards some incumbents such as Airtel, Vodafone and Idea. The telecom regulator has proposed re-distributions of 900 MHz band and also said that incumbents will have to surrender existing spectrum bands, besides, they will also have to pay more for acquiring such spectrums. In addition to these,  TRAI has also informed the government to return about 2X 2.4 MHz of spectrum from MTNL–according to telecom regulator the vendor has acquired more spectrum as per requirements.

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Anyway, the extension of refresh auction date will rejuvenate some vendors, whose license have already been cancelled by the supreme court of India. However, despite of the court decision, over 6.86 million new GSM connections were added in the last month.

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