Telecom Lead India: GSM operators’ industry body COAI
has asked finance minister Pranab Mukherjee to auction 19 permits that
were granted to Tata Teleservices.
In its letter to Mukherjee, the body contended that 141
licenses need to be cancelled as per the Supreme Court’s February 2 order and
not 122, as was interpreted by both the industry and the government.
COAI alleged that Trai had excluded the GSM spectrum
allotted to TTSL in 2008 in calculating the available spectrum for auction
and that the “largesse” to TTSL will amount to over Rs 20,000 crore.
While replying to COAI, Tata Teleservices issued a statement
terming COAI’s stance as misleading, totally uncalled for, false and
devoid of any merit.
“COAI is distorting the facts and attempting to present
a misleading picture before the finance minister, in a bid to subserve its
vested interests. Further, the letter is speculative in nature and represents a
concocted story of some interested parties within COAI. Also, the contents of
the letter are not borne out by judicial records and the referred
judgment,” said a Tata Teleservices spokesperson.
TTSL shows anger over ASSOCHAM letter seeking cancellation of
its dual-technology status
Recently, Assocham also told the telecom ministry and
Trai that a total of 141 licences need to be cancelled as per the Supreme
Court’s February 2 order.
In an official release, Tata Teleservices alleged that
Assocham’s letters, to PM and Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal, “serves the
interests of a handful of powerful members with the industry body”.
COAI claims that the government awarded additional 19 GSM
licences to Tata Teleservices through the same press release that it used to
award the contentious 122 licences.