10-year license extension of Reliance Telecom on stake, SC reserved its verdict

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Reliance Telecom, a subsidiary of Anil Dhirubhai Ambani group, failed to receive a verdict on its license extension plea, as the Supreme Court reserved judgement on the grounds that it has issued a notice to Department of Telecommunications (DoT) on this regard. The SC bench was headed by Justice J Chelameswar.


Reliance Telecom sought a 10-year extension to their licenses in seven circles, including Assam, North East, West Bengal, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Himachal Pradesh. The DoT had earlier rejected the extension plea on 2nd February.

Other telecom operators, Airtel, Idea Cellular, Vodafone Mobile Services and Loop Mobile India had also sought a similar license extension plea. However, Government argues that the norms do not make it mandatory for the extension, rather it says ‘may’ extent. Hence, the matter is at its discretion.

The Government has suggested to auction the spectrum surrendered by the operators. But, operators oppose the move and sought a stay on the auction. According to them, ‘the spectrum should not be put on the block’. Apex Court, which rejected the stay of auction, responded that the operators can take part in auction without any prejudice.

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