New Delhi: The ministry of corporate affairs has confirmed that a letter has been sent to the department of telecom, or DoT, asking it to re-examine the policy and regulation that deals with the eligibility for giving Loop Telecom Pvt. Ltd a letter of intent, or LoI, for grant of a unified access service (UAS) licence. An operator wishing to provide telecom services in the country has to obtain an LoI for grant of a UAS licence.
“We have sent a letter to the DoT after it was approved by the minister, Prem Chand Gupta, asking the latter to review the UAS licence given to Loop,” said an official at the ministry of corporate affairs close to the development.
Tough words: DoT secretary Siddhartha Behura. Harikrishna Katragadda / Mint
On 15 January, Mint reported that the ministry had launched an investigation to find out if the Essar group had a significant shareholding or controlled Loop. Indian laws prohibit one company or conglomerate from holding more than a 10% stake in two telcos operating in the same area; the Essar group has a 33% stake in Vodafone Essar Ltd.
But a DoT official said it would act only after its own probe was over.
“We will now have to examine their reply and look into the matter. We will also ask them for clarifications and only after that will we take any action,” DoT secretary Siddhartha Behura said on Tuesday. “If there is any wrongdoing on their part then they will have to pay the penalty. They can lose their licence also,” he said.