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2G Auction News Roundup: New Auction For Freed Licenses; Vodafone & Airtel Challenge Auction Plans

New Auction For Freed Up Licenses Department of Telecommunication (DoT) has announced (pdf) that it will be conducting a separate round of auctions for licenses in the 1800MHz spectrum that freed up due to the Supreme Court order earlier this month and were not included in the upcoming 2G spectrum auction. The organization however noted that the details of the auction is still being worked out and a separate notice inviting application (NIA) will be issued shortly. Last week, Supreme Court had issued an order directing all operators who did not win spectrum in the November auctions to close down services immediately. Following this, telecom operator Uninor was forced to shut down its operations in Mumbai immediately. Airtel And Vodafone Challenge Government's Auction Plans Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India have approached the Delhi High Court to challenge the government's plan to auction the 900MHz spectrum band, reports Reuters. The report however states that its not clear when the Delhi High Court will hear its plea. Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India currently use the 900MHz frequency band in some of the areas. However, the government of India had announced plans to auction airwaves in the 900MHz spectrum band along with 1800Mhz and 800MHz spectrum band in March. In December 2012, reports suggested that DoT had plans of putting up about 24 blocks of spectrum for auction. What's particularly noteworthy was that DoT had suggested that existing operators whose licences are up for renewal in 2014, should be considered as new players, mandating them to bid for a minimum of four blocks in both 1800…

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