Idea to surrender overlapping licenses

August 11th, 2008 - 8:19 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, August 11 (ANI): Idea Cellular was asked by the Government to surrender either its license or that of Spice Communications, its latest acquisition, to avoid overlapping.

However, Idea would not be refunded the license fee said the Telecom Secretary Sidhharth Behura.

According to sources, Idea is likely to surrender its own licenses and retain Spice licenses in both, Punjab and Karnataka, circles as Spice has 800 Mhz spectrum in these areas and can accommodate more users.

Besides, Idea is yet to start its service whereas Spice is already offering services there.

Idea has got 4.4 Mhz spectrum for Karnataka and for Punjab it has just got the license.

Idea Cellular acquired a controlling stake in Spice Communications in June for over Rs 2,700 crore and had sought clarity on the licensing issues from the Department of Telecom (DoT).

DoT in its response to Idea had said that post merger with Spice, Idea would have to return one of the licenses in each circle of Punjab and Haryana.

Idea is likely to lose Rs 300 crore in this process. (ANI)

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