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Auctions 2016 Day 1: Rs 53,531 Cr in bids; 700MHz & 900MHz unsold

The department of telecommunications has received bids worth Rs 53,531 crore across 5 bands—800 MHz, 1,800 MHz, 2,100 MHz, 2,300 MHz and 2,500 MHz bands on the first day of spectrum auctions, according to a PTI report. The 700 MHz band being sold at a reserve price of Rs 11,845 crore per MHz and the 900 MHz band saw no takers on the 1st day. Telcos have shown most interest in the 1800 MHz band used for delivering 2G/4G services, closely followed by 2100 MHz band (used for 3G/4G), 2500 MHz band (used for 4G), 2300 MHz band (4G), and minimal interest in 800 MHz band (2G/4G), the report added. Auctions were conducted in five rounds across these bands, and according to bidding details released on the DoT site, telcos have also shown active interest in North Eastern circles including Assam, West Bengal, followed by other circles like Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Haryana, Gujarat, Punjab, and Rajasthan. Note that there are 7 telcos bidding for this year’s auctions namely Idea, Vodafone, Airtel, Aircel, Tata Teleservices, Reliance Communications, and Reliance Jio. These telcos have together submitted Rs 14,653.07 crore as Earnest Money Deposits (EMD)—a mandatory Bank Guarantee from a Scheduled Bank for the purpose of pre-qualification—and from application fees. This will be India’s largest telecom spectrum auction, while the government expects bids worth Rs 5.6 lakh crore for this year. A total of 2,354.55 megahertz of spectrum across 7 different bands will be auctioned off in 2016, which is  5 times more than…

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