RCom, others got dual tech even before policy came: TTSL

TTSL's statement came in response to RCom's claim that it had to wait since February 2006 for more than 18 months to get the dual technology (GSM and CDMA) licence. RCom had said yesterday that its application was "on identical terms and payment of identical fees as the three other companies -- Shri Ratan Tata group's Tata Teleservices, Himachal Futuristic Communications and Shyam Telecom (now known as Sistema) -- and there is nothing special or untoward in the same."

TTSL, however, said that it "was the only operator, amongst those named above, to apply for Dual-Technology Licence after the 19 October 2007 announcement by the DoT and it is hence unfair and incorrect to compare TTSL with the other applicants, who had applied before the policy was announced."

"It is indeed special and intriguing that RCom and two other operators applied and got DoT approval even before the policy was announced," it added. TTSL said that while RCom was allotted spectrum in all the circles immediately in January 2008, TTSL got DoT approval after 83 days.

"TTSL, even after three years, is still awaiting spectrum allocation in the crucial Delhi Circle and in 39 commercially crucial districts in 9 telecom circles," it said. The grant of dual technology approval to RCom in October, 2007, has been upheld by the Delhi High Court by a judgement in August, 2008, and by the Telecom Tribunal, TDSAT, by an order in March, 2009.

The CAG had pointed out that the DoT favoured RCom in jumping the queue for grant of GSM spectrum ahead of others. Over the past several weeks, as part of investigations pursuant to the Supreme Court's orders, the CBI is reportedly examining a large number of telecom firms and their officials, from across the entire telecom industry in relation to various matters from 2001 to 2008.

TTSL also clarified that the company and the Tata Group were not family-owned or family-run concerns or owned by Ratan Tata. "Hence, to refer to them as 'Shri Ratan Tata group's Tata Teleservices Limited' is not appropriate," it added.

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