'Spectrum auction ends; no bids for Mumbai, Maharashtra, UP East'
Posted on: 01:40 PM IST Mar 11, 2013
New Delhi: The government will get around Rs 3,639 crore from the 2G spectrum auction for CDMA services, which ended on Monday with Russian conglomerate Sistema's Indian unit SSTL being the only bidder.
However, the government may not get any upfront payment as Rs 1,626 crore has to be adjusted against SSTL's earlier payment, sources said.
The auction, which lasted just around four hours, drew no bids for Mumbai, Maharashtra and UP East, they added. The auction for 2G spectrum for GSM players held in November 2012 was spread across three days fetching the government Rs 9,407 crore.
The CDMA sale did not take place in November as there was no participant due to high cost. Government has since then reduced the spectrum base price by 50 per cent but still no company, except SSTL, showed any interest.
In 2010, spectrum auction for 3G services ended after 34 days and 183 rounds of bidding. This was followed by 16-day long auction for wireless broadband (BWA) spectrum.
Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL) had deposited Rs 613.75 crore for the auction, which made it eligible to bid for minimum quantum of 2.5 Megahertz spectrum (two blocks of 1.25 Mhz airwaves frequency) in 11 circles.
However, the company bid for only eight circles, which means it may curtail operations in three more circles. The company has already announced discontinuation of services in 10 out of 22 telecom circles - Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, North East, Orissa and Punjab.