High Court admits petition of S-Tel seeking 16 licences

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New Delhi, Jan 16 (UNI) The Delhi High Court today deferred hearing till tomorrow on a petition filed by S-Tel, which has sought the Court's help in procuring Letters of Intent (LOIs) for telecom licences for 16 circles.

Justice Gita Mittal issued notices to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to respond by tomorrow in this regard.

Senior lawyer Soli Sorabjee who appeared on behalf of S-Tel said this case is different from the Spectrum case which was filed earlier by Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) but S-Tel was only seeking redressal of a genuine grievance arising out of a unique case.

Mr Sorabjee contended that their case was unique on the basis that they are the only affected party, which had qualified the eligibility test criteria before the cut-off date and had applied for 16 circles, applications of which are still pending.

The petition states that their application for six circles, for which it had already got LOIs were submitted two months before the government annoucement on September 24, 2007, so that no new applications would be accepted after October 1, 2007. The company had also voluntarily offered to pay to the government, additional spectrum charges of Rs 13,752 crore for Pan-India GSM spectrum, Mr Sorabjee said.

The court has fixed the hearing on January 17 and directed DOT to reply in this matter.

UNI SNG BDP RP KP1710

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