Tata Teleservices to surrender excess CDMA spectrum against one-time fee levied by the DoT

Tata Teleservices has decided to withdraw spectrum beyond 2.5MHz in all circles excluding Delhi and Mumbai. By doing so, Tata is protesting against the Department of Telecommunication on its decision of imposing one-time fee on the CDMA telecos for providing carries services on airwaves they hold above 2.5 MHz in the 800MHz band.

In January, the government had ordered to levy charges on carriers holding additional spectrum for the rest of the license period. According to the order, if an operator is not willing to pay the additional charges on using spectrum above the 2.5MHz limit, they will be allowed to surrender this additional spectrum.

In an official statement, Tata has cleared that, “Tata Teleservices, under protest and without prejudice, has intimated its decision to the DoT to surrender spectrum in the CDMA 800 MHz beyond 2.5 MHz in all circles except Mumbai and Delhi. In these two metros the company will retain one additional carrier (1.25 MHz) beyond 2.5 MHz for the balance period of licenses.”

“The company stands committed to ensuring that this will not adversely affect network or service quality and is looking to deploy additional capex to offset the reduced spectrum availability,” the statement added. It has also sought and obtained stays against the DoT demand for one time spectrum charges above 2.5 MHz in the CDMA 800 MHz band in the High Courts of Kolkata and Mumbai.