The Department of Telecom is looking into the 3G Network Sharing Agreements made by the private operators to offer 3G Service on a nationwide basis without even having PAN India licence to do so.
The DoT has said that this type of pact is a clear MVNO wherein the Operators who do not have Licence and Spectrum to offer the service have launched 3G Services & Tariffs as well.
The Telecom Enforcement Resource and Monitoring (TERM) Cell of the DoT had said that the Intra Circle Roaming Pact for sharing 3G airwaves between Private Telecom Operators is a clear violation of licence conditions & illegal. Also is has advised the department to initiate strict action against them including imposing Financial Penalty.
“A UAS licensee cannot offer 3G services and declare tariff plans for 3G services in (areas) where he has neither been allocated 3G spectrum nor has his licence been amended for commercial use of 3G spectrum,” said TERM.
Airtel, Vodafone & Idea had come together, after this years 3G auctions wherein no Operator could win PAN India 3G Spectrum, under Network Sharing Agreement between the three offering 3G Mobile & Data Services in the circles where they has no Spectrum. Likewise, Aircel & Tata Docomo too joined hands to offer Pan India 3G Service through a similar agreement among the two.
It would be interesting to note here that BSNL & MTNL too offers 3G Services on each other Networks the same way these private operators are offering.