Terming sectoral regulator TRAI’s proposals on spectrum auction as “unfair and discriminatory”, Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL) on Thursday said they favour the incumbent GSM telecom operators.
“The recent TRAI recommendations favour the incumbents running 2G networks. For TRAI to suggest carving out E-GSM band from 800 MHz and open it for use for old GSM 2G networks clearly reflects this thinking,” the company said in a statement.
Sticking to its earlier stand, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India in its clarification to Department of Telecom (DoT) reiterated that there should be no auction for spectrum in 800 MHz band, used by CDMA players, as there was no demand for these radio waves in the last auction.
TRAI said there is a large gap in the worth of spectrum in its present use as against its potential use and “no hasty decision” should be taken on the matter.
TRAI said the government should first fully explore the feasibility of adoption of E-GSM band in a time-bound manner.
Stating that it does not agree with TRAI proposal, SSTL said: “The said recommendations have effectively blocked SSTL’s future growth path in India both in terms of expanding within its existing nine circles and to other circles.”
The company said it has always demonstrated its willing and readiness to upgrade its CDMA network to the next generation (3G, LTE) network.
“TRAI, however, has persistently rejected all such proposals,” it added.
SSTL said the regulator has not provided any roadmap for MTS, the brand under which it provides mobile services, to acquire additional spectrum within 800 MHz.
“This is clearly unfair and discriminatory and goes against the spirit of providing a level playing field to India’s only pure play CDMA operator,” it added.
The company on Wednesday announced the commercial roll-out of ‘3G Plus’ telecom network across all its circles, which is used to offer high-speed data services.