Govt only seeking details, not stopping JV of Tata and Virgin: DoT

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New Delhi, Mar 5 (UNI) The Government has sought information from Tata Teleservices on its recent 'franchisee agreement' with UK-based Virgin Mobile, but has not stopped the two companies from rolling out services.

''We have not asked them to stop anything, but have only asked a clarification about their deal. We will not scrutinise the deal, but will only check the details to see if the same is consistent with licencing conditions, as their has been a lot of hue and cry on the same,'' DoT's secretary Siddhartha Behura told reporters on the sidelines of a function.

On Sunday, the Tatas and Virgin group announced their JV structured as a franchisee agreement through which, the former is planning to offer Virgin Mobile services in the country.

The service is seen similar to mobile virtual network operation (MVNO), which is not permitted in the country.

An MVNO is a mobile operator that does not own its own spectrum and usually does not have its own network infrastructure. Instead, MVNO's have business arrangements with traditional mobile operators to buy minutes of use (MOU) for sale to their own customers.

On being asked whether government will allow MVNO's in India, Mr Behura said, ''we will consider this. Its a policy decision and we will examine it from the same angle.'' UNI BJR AK HT1812

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