TRAI moves court seeking judgment on its role

By : |July 29, 1999 0

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)
has moved the Delhi high court seeking its judgment in the case between cellular operators
and the government on clarification of the role of the regulator in arbitration.

According to reports, the case was expected to be taken up
for hearing on Friday. TRAI chairman Justice S.S. Sodhi has been quoted as saying that the
regulator had filed a petition seeking pronouncement of judgment in the case. Mr Sodhi
said that TRAI would go ahead with its case only if the government and the cellular
operators file appeal to withdraw their case.

Meanwhile, the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has said that it would withdraw all cases including the one questioning the
jurisdiction of the regulator. In a statement, the COAI said, “We will not object to the
entry of Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd. into the mobile telephony services and will
withdraw all legal proceedings against the department of telecommunications and the Union
of India in response to the migration package.’’

COAI said that TRAI’s intention to intervene in the
legal proceedings where its powers and jurisdictions are concerned, was purely a subject
matter of the TRAI’s decision. It further said that the intervention of the regulator
would not affect the implementation of the new telecom policy and the migration package.

The withdrawal of the case was one of the preconditions to
the announcement of the new telecom package which is based on revenue sharing arrangement.

In another development, the number of cellular operators
who have agreed to withdraw cases to accept the new telecom policy has gone up to 12.

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