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Updated: December 5, 2012 15:46 IST

No change in spectrum auction policy: Sibal

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Union Minister for Communication and IT Kapil Sibal entering Parliament House. A file photo.
Union Minister for Communication and IT Kapil Sibal entering Parliament House. A file photo.

Government does not intend to change the policy to auction spectrum for mobile phone operators, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal told the Lok Sabha on Wednesday.

“We do not intend to change the policy (of auction of spectrum),” Mr. Sibal said in reply to questions on whether the government would return the policy of ‘first come, first serve’.

Mr. Sibal said there was a drop of 27.82 million mobile phone subscribers in the July-September period and the number was expected to touch 208 million.

“The decline in the telecom user base after June 2012 is due to the removal of inactive mobile telephone connections and high tele-density in urban areas,” he said.

Mr. Sibal said the reality was that the tele-density in the country was 680 million and still 500 million do not have a mobile phone.

On complaints from members about poor connectivity on state-run BSNL network, Mr. Sibal admitted to problems which he attributed to outdated networks.

He said the root cause was for the last three years BSNL was trying to complete the tendering process to set up its second core network.

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