The telecom department has asked for the Attorney General’s opinion over refunding entry fee to telcos, whose licenses were cancelled by the Supreme Court in February this year.
Earlier, the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) had decided to adjust fees of only those companies who win spectrum in the auction of 1800 MHz band. The department has sought legal clarity if there is case to refund money of telcos, who did not participate in the auction.
The Supreme Court had scrapped 122 telecom licenses of eight telcos, including Etisalat DB, Sistema Shyam, ByCell, S Tel, Loop Telecom, Idea Cellular, Videocon and Uninor. In the recently conducted auction, only Idea Cellular, Videocon and Telenor have managed to acquire spectrum. These telcos may opt for the deferred payment option, which will offset the 33 percent upfront amount.
The Indian Government received legal notices from Etisalat DB, Sistema Shyam, ByCell, S Tel and Loop Telecom, seeking protection of their investment. Beside legal notice to the Indian Government, Sistema Shyam that operates under MTS brand in the country may opt for international arbitration as well.