India’s Business Standard is reporting that the government is planning to put successful bidders for the upcoming 3G auctions on a waiting list for spectrum in nine of the 23 telecoms circles, following reports that there will not be enough spectrum available to accommodate four players and state-owned telcos BSNL and MTNL. Under the proposal, the chosen operators will be asked to pay 25% of their bid price upfront, and will be allocated spectrum when it becomes available. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has proposed that 3G auctions only be carried out for 14 of the calling circles initially, pending the release of spectrum by the defence forces in those areas where it is scarce; the Finance Ministry however has asked that auctions for all circles be conducted together.
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