New Delhi: The Union government on Thursday ruled out the possibility of auctioning 2G—or so-called second generation—spectrum for mobile services, even as it looks at the process of implementation of mobile number portability across the country.
“We will go with the existing norms for allocation of spectrum. There will be no auction of 2G spectrum as recommended by telecom regulator Trai (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India),” said communications and information technology minister Andimuthu Raja.
Playing safe: IT minister A. Raja.
However, spectrum for 3G—or third generation— services and Wimax will be allotted through auction, he said. “We would go with Trai’s recommendations as they are legitimate,” Raja said.
The minister earlier in the day said that the defence ministry was likely to release some spectrum by year-end.
With scarcity of spectrum an issue that is dogging the sector, the communications ministry has been seeking the vacating of 45mHz of spectrum by the defence ministry.
Asked if the government would implement number portability, he said the ministry is still considering various aspects of the issue.
Number portability allows users to change their service provider while retaining their original mobile number.
“This issue (number portability) has to be discussed with all existing operators as ultimately, they have to implement it,” he said, refusing to give further details.