New Delhi: The Department of Telecom has awarded unified licence to Idea Cellular for seven circles, sources said on Sunday.
The company has been awarded licences for Assam, West Bengal, Kolkata, North East, Tamil Nadu, Jammu and Kashmir and Odisha.
“Idea Cellular has been awarded unified licence for seven circles,” an official source said.
The company had applied for licences in seven circles after it emerged as the second biggest winner in the November 2012 spectrum auction.
The company won spectrum for all the seven circles where its licences were cancelled. It licence in Bihar circle was unaffected by the Supreme Court order cancelling 122 telecom permits in the 2G scam.
Idea had earlier refused to sign the unified licence agreement that barred operators from entering into 3G intra-circle roaming pact.
The DoT had said that it was illegal for telecom operators to sell 3G services in areas where they do not have spectrum.
Telecom companies Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular had contested the DoT's point and the matter is now sub-judice.
However, the DoT and Idea Cellular later agreed to follow the court order with respect to implementation of norms related to 3G roaming pacts in new licences.
“We have applied for seven circles and got the unified licence for all,” a source at Idea Cellular confirmed the development. When asked about 3G roaming pact norms in unified licence, the source said it shall be subject to the final outcome of the court order.
Telecom tribunal TDSAT had given a split verdict on the dispute between DoT and the three operators over 3G intra-circle roaming pacts. The matter is now pending with the Delhi High Court.