Idea told to surrender overlapping licenses in two circles

August 11th, 2008 - 10:07 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 11 (IANS) The government Monday asked Idea Cellular to surrender either its licence or that of its latest acquisition, Spice Communications, for the Punjab and Karnataka circles to avoid overlapping, but said it would not make any refund of licence fees. “The policy is very clear. What will one do with two licenses? You need just one to offer the service. Obviously, Idea has to return one license (in each circle) but there wouldn’t be any refund for this,” Telecom Secretary Sidhharth Behura told reporters here.

However, Idea officials told IANS by phone, “We have not received any communication from the Department of Telecom (DoT).”

Idea Cellular, which had acquired a controlling stake in Spice Communications in June for about Rs.27 billion, has sought clarity on the licensing issues from the DoT.

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

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