The department of telecommunications (DoT) is considering action against Augere Wireless Broadband India and may serve it a showcause notice for having failed to meet rollout obligations.
A senior government official said the matter is before telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad for his consideration. A decision is likely after the Bihar elections are over.
DoT has served notices to Augere Wireless on multiple occasions in the past, starting from mid-2012, as the company has been not been meeting rollout obligations under the licensing conditions, mandated in a notice inviting application (NIA). In August this year, Bharti Airtel had signed a definitive agreement to acquire 100% equity stake in Augere Wireless Broadband India.
In June 2010, six private telecom companies including Augere Wireless, Bharti Airtel, Infotel Broadband — acquired by Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm soon after the spectrum auction ended — amongst others. collectively paid almost R40,000 crore for spectrum in the 2300 MHz band to start 4G networks using the TDD LTE (time-division duplex long-term evolution) technology standard.
Augere Wireless holds 20 MHz of spectrum in the 2300 MHz band used for 4G services in the telecom circle of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. Although the company responded to earlier showcause notices, it has done only testing of 4G services till date. It has not started commercial operations yet. Augere Wireless has licences to operate broadband wireless networks in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh but did not launch services.