The much awaited spectrum auction of 2015 has finally begun. This time the government will auction airwaves for the 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2100 megahertz (MHz) bands. As reported by IANS, an official associated with the spectrum has stated that, the process of auction has begun smoothly. This time eight telecom operators will be participating in the auction. The eight telcos has submitted the earnest money of Rs 20,435 crore.
IANS reported that, DoT has selected Kolkata-based mjunction services – an information technology and internet company promoted 14 years ago as a 50:50 venture by Steel Authority of India (SAIL) and TATA Steel – for conducting the spectrum auction.
The total spectrum put to auction is 103.75 MHz in 800 MHz band, 177.8 MHz in 900 MHz band and 99.2 MHz in 1,800 MHz band – a total of 380.75 MHz in 800, 900 and 1,800 MHz. The auction will take place between 9 am to 7.30 pm from Monday to Saturday. The government will also be offering sale 5 MHz in the 2,100 MHz band, which is used for 3G services in 17 out of 22 telecom areas.
The government is expecting a minimum of Rs 9,355 crore of collection from the auction of three bands. The list of telecom operators participating in the auction includes Reliance Communications, Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India, Tata Teleservices, Uninor, Idea Cellular and Aircel. However, some of the operators are not participating in the auction.
The finance ministry is expected to closely watch the e-auction of radio frequency spectrum for telecom operators as it is crucial for the government to be able to meet its fiscal deficit target of 4.1 per cent of GDP.