New Delhi: US-based chip-maker Qualcomm on Monday offered to give an undertaking before telecom tribunal Tdsat that it will clear the dues of its partner Tulip Telecom and requested that the telecom ministry be asked to issue licence to it for BWA spectrum.
Tulip is a 13% shareholder in the consortium which had bid for BWA spectrum along with Qualcomm. As per the rules and regulation, operators has to get a no-due certificate from DoT for a new licence.
However, in December DoT had issued a show-cause notice to Tulip claiming a due of Rs146 crore for 2009-10 and 2010-11.
During the proceedings, Qualcomm’s counsel submitted that the Department of Telecom was yet to work out the final figure of Tulip’s dues, which is disputed and once done, it would be paid.
Senior advocate S. Ganesh appearing for chip-maker said Qualcomm was ready to file an undertaking along with an affidavit in this regard and its ISP licence should be alloted after that.
This was accepted by the Telecom Disputes Settlement & Appellate Tribunal (Tdsat), which asked Qualcomm to file a formal application.
The Tdsat bench headed by its chairman Justice S. B. Sinha also asked the DoT to file reply over the Qualcomm’s new move by Friday and directed to list the matter on Monday for next hearing.
Ganesh submitted that DoT has issued show-cause notice only to Tulip over the due of Rs146 crore. It is opposed by its Indian partner and some correspondences are exchanged between DoT and Tulip, however, the matter is still at the show-cause stage only.
He said at the time of allotment of LoI on 10 October 2011 there was no dues on Tulip. The show-cause notice was issued two months after that and it is not a final demand yet.
Ganesh further quipped that the US-based company has already paid Rs4,900 crore towards BWA spectrum and wondered why the licence is not being allotted for Rs146 crore due which is still under dispute.
The tribunal was hearing the petition of Qualcomm, which has challenged the DoT notice for cancelling the allotment of BWA spectrum in four circles that it bagged last year in auction.
Qualcomm’s application for licence was rejected by DoT on the basis that it had made four nominees for the spectrum. The company was fearing that its licence may be revoked and spectrum may be allotted to someone else.
On 2 December, Qualcomm had sought time to verify the authenticity of the dues claimed by DoT and said that if that was correct, then would pay it.