Tata Tele approaches TDSAT for additional spectrum allocation

NEW DELHI, June 17: Tata Teleservices has approached telecom tribunal TDSAT seeking a direction to the government for allotment of additional airwaves for GSM services before proposed spectrum auction.
Tata Teleservices has filed two petitions before the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) last week for allocation of additional spectrum. The pleas are scheduled to come for hearing on Monday before a TDSAT bench headed by its Chairman Justice S B Sinha.
According to sources, Tata Teleservices has requested the tribunal to direct to Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to first allot the additional spectrum of 1.8 Mhz before the proposed auction.
A service provider is authorised to get additional spectrum on achieving subscriber-linked milestones as mentioned under its existing telecom licence agreement.
On June 11, Reliance Communications (RCom) had approached the sectoral tribunal seeking similar relief for GSM and CDMA spectrum.
It had requested TDSAT to direct DoT to allocate or earmark the company 1.8 Mhz spectrum for GSM service and balance of CDMA spectrum as per its agreement with DoT before the auction. The TDSAT had issued notice to the DoT asking it to file its reply within four weeks.
RCom in its petition said that as per its agreement with Union of India, telecom licence holder is authorised to get 4.4 Mhz spectrum to start its service and additional 1.8 Mhz after achieving specified subscriber numbers as stipulated in subscriber-linked criteria.
The company said that it has achieved subscriber-linked criteria and hence is entitled to get additional spectrum of 1.8 Mhz.
RCom petition had said government is now contemplating to allot balance contractual GSM and CDMA spectrum on payment of an additional price. This is contrary to the terms of the Licence Agreement and also against RCom’s vested right to receive the balance of the contracted spectrum, its petition said.
RCom had alleged that DoT acted in a discriminatory manner
and allocated spectrum to many operators free of cost even beyond the limit mentioned in the contract.
It had also said that many operators have been allocated spectrum in low frequency band compared to RCom which helped them save capital expenditure of over Rs 20,000 crore for providing telecom services. (PTI)