Vodafone Essar has shot off a letter to the DoT alleging that telecom infrastructure service provider, Quippo Telecom is not entitled to offer active infrastructure services, reports news agency, PTI. The operator has gone to the extent of questioning DoT’s clarification issued last year on active infrastructure.
According to Vodafone, IP-1 licence holders such as Quippo can offer only passive infrastructure services such as dark fibres, right of way, duct space, towers on lease, rent or sale basis to the licencees. Active infrastructure services can be offered by only UASL holders, says Vodafone.
"This is a legal and vested right of Unified Access Service Licence (UASL) and cannot be eroded, destroyed or diluted in a manner which is contrary to law," Vodafone said in a letter addressed to DoT Secretary, P J Thomas.
Incidentally, last March a DoT clarification stated that IP-1 providers can offer active infrastructure services as well if it is provided on behalf of licencees. The clarification said that the scope of work can include antenna, feeder cable, radio access network on behalf of the licencee.
Vodafone however refuses to accept DoT clarification and says no clarification can actually extend the scope of the licence itself which in this case is limited to passive infrastructure."We believe that the scope of an IP (infrastructure provider) licence is confined to providing passive infrastructure and the DoT clarification has no legal force since a clarification cannot give a non-existent right and enlarge the scope of service of the IP licence,” said Vodafone Essar.
According to Vodafone, the mentioned clarification is not even hosted on DoT website and therefore the mode of communicating this clarification by DoT to concerned players is not known. “This is against the requirement of an open, fair and transparent process which should be followed by DoT,” said Vodafone.
Offlate, Vodafone has been in news over policy and regulation related issues. The operator has objected to grant of spectrum beyond the start-up spectrum to dual tech operators. It has also called for higher 3G levies to be imposed on these dual tech players.