It is going to be a long drawn battle for the government in the 2G mess on the international arbitration front.
One more company has threatened to evoke India’s Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement with Mauritius to protect its investment here.
Malaysia’s Axiata, which holds around 20 percent in Idea Cellular, has threatened to initiate arbitration against India to claim damages after the Supreme Court cancelled 13 licences of the Indian telecom operator, a report in The Economic Times said today.
If it goes ahead, Axiata will be the sixth operator to do so, the report said.
According to the report, the other companies that have slapped notices on the Indian government are ByCell of Switzerland, Telenor of Norway, Sistema of Russia, Capital Global and Kaif Investment, Mauritius-based investors of Loop Telecom, and Vodafone International Holdings.
“The Supreme Court's decision to cancel 13 of Idea Cellular's licences without compensation and any further actions taken by the Republic of India to execute this decision amount to a clear violation of Axiata's rights under the Mauritius-India bilateral investment treaty,”
The report quoted from the company’s communication to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, telecom minister Kapil Sibal and external affairs minister SM Krishna.
According to the company, it has suffered losses because of the Supreme Court’s decision to cancel licences.
The Supreme Court has set a deadline of 31 August for completing the spectrum auction process, which will allow Idea Cellular to bid for spectrum in circles where they could get licences.
Companies will have to pay at least Rs 14,111 crore for five megahertz of spectrum across the country.