Bharti to stop 3G ser­vices in 7 ar­eas

The Pak Banker - - 6BUSINESS -

Bharti Air­tel Ltd. (BHARTI), In­dia’s largest wire­less com­pany, has been asked by the government to stop third-gen­er­a­tion phone ser­vices in seven re­gions by March 18 for vi­o­lat­ing its li­cense agree­ment, two peo­ple with di­rect knowl­edge of the mat­ter said.

The com­pany has also been or­dered to pay 3.5 bil­lion ru­pees ($ 64.7 mil­lion) for al­low­ing its cus­tomers to con­nect to a ri­vals net­work in ar­eas in­clud­ing east­ern part of Ut­tar Pradesh state, said one of the peo­ple who didn’t want to be iden­ti­fied be­fore an of­fi­cial an­nounce­ment. Bharti will ap­peal the or­der to­day in the High Court in New Delhi to seek a stay on the can­cel­la­tion, the per­son said.

Bharti, Voda­fone Group Plc. ( VOD) and Idea (IDEA) Cel­lu­lar Ltd. en­tered into agree­ments af­ter the 3G auc­tion in 2010 that en­abled the mo­bile- phone ser­vice providers to of­fer data ser­vices across the world’s sev­enth­largest land­mass in­stead of op­er­at­ing only in the re­gions for which they won li­censes. Bharti paid 1.6 bil­lion ru­pees for the right to op­er­ate ser­vices in Mum­bai and Delhi each. That com­pares with the re­serve price of 35 bil­lion ru­pees for an all-In­dia per­mit.

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