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Government to consider show-cause notices to Airtel, Idea and Tata Teleservices
Indian Government is considering to issue a show-cause notice to major Indian telecom operators for illegally promoting 3G services in circles where they does not hold valid roaming agreements. The announcement came from Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal as a reply to Janata Dal (United) Lok Sabha MP Maheshwar Hazari.
Hazari wrote a letter to Kapil Sibal in December 2011 raising concerns on telecom operators providing 3G services in circles where they does not hold airwaves. Kapil Sibal was stated as saying, “Action of issuing show cause notices is being contemplated against the telecom service providers."
The telecom operators to receive the show-cause notice include Airtel, Vodafone, Idea and Tata Teleservices. All the telecom operators had challenged the judgment of Department of Telecom before TDSAT, asking for the scrapping of 3G roaming pacts issued on December 23 within a day, . It resulted in a split judgment from Telecom tribunal TDSAT. Though the tribunal"s Chairman went against the DoT the TDSAT members upheld action taken by DoT and imposed fine on service providers.
Latest reports suggest DoT to be preparing a show-cause notice including clauses that were issued while inviting application for 3G auction. Department of Telecom is also expected to request AG"s assistance for drafting a separate notice so as to recover amount being earned by Telecom Operators via 3G roaming agreement.