Group of Ministers to evaluate 3G spectrum vacation

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New Delhi, Nov 19 (ANI): An Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) will meet today to evaluate the development on the auction of 3G mobile licenses, and differences that have arisen between the Telecom and the Defence ministries over the release of spectrum for viable use.

The government plans to begin the auction of 3G (third generation) spectrum from January 14 next year, but the process could be delayed due to a lack of clarity on the number of slots to be sold.

In the current fiscal, the government has approximated a profit of about Rs 35,000 crore from the sale of spectrum.

Thursday's meeting is the second one in three days. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who heads the EGoM, had earlier this week met Telecom Minister A Raja and Defence Minister A K Antony on the issue, but nothing was sorted out.

The Defence Ministry is not in a position to vacate any idle spectrum, contrary to claims put up by the Department of Telecom (DoT) that Defence had extra spectrum.

"DoT has said that they have 3G spectrum but the Ministry of Defence is not accepting it, as they are saying the radio frequency is being used by them and cannot be vacated," DoT officials said.

Thursday's meeting, the main agenda will be to analyse the development of the vacation of spectrum. (ANI)

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