ABTO objects to additional sops

NEW DELHI DEC. 24. The Association of Basic Telecom Operators (ABTO) today raised its objections on the Government's decision to offer a sop of additional 2 per cent reduction in licence fee only to first and second cellular licencees. "If one is talking about a level playing field, then the benefits should be equal for both cellular and basic operators,'' the ABTO Secretary General, S. C. Khanna, said.

Mr. Khanna said the ABTO appreciated the cellular industry's decision to withdraw the ongoing WLL case in the Supreme Court as also the two percentage point reduction in the licence fee across the board.

Penalty and additional licence fee were levied on basic operators while migrating to the unified licence regime to bring about a level playing field, Mr. Khanna said, adding now the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has also recommended change in numbering to complete the process of ensuring the level playing field "Now additional benefits given to one side would again tilt the field against basic operators,'' Mr. Khanna added. — PTI

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