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Idea challenges order on its merger with Spice

Idea Cellular has challenged the recent order of the company bench of the Delhi High Court, which said no to transfer of six licences of Spice Communications to the Aditya Birla group firm, which acquired it in 2008.

twitter-logo PTI   New Delhi     Last Updated: July 14, 2011  | 10:23 IST

Idea Cellular has challenged the recent order of the company bench of the Delhi High Court, which said no to transfer of six licences of Spice Communications to the Aditya Birla group firm, which acquired it in 2008, before a division bench.

Idea petition would be heard on Thursday by a division bench of justices Vikramjit Sen and Siddharth Mridul.

Earlier, a company bench of the High Court had on July 4 held that the licences of Spice Communications could not be transferred to Idea, as the company had not complied with the licence and merger guidelines.

The single member company bench had also slapped a fine of Rs 1 crore for not giving the correct information to the court.

Passing the judgement on the merger application of Idea and Spice, the company court had said Idea had not put the rejection letters by DoT on merger of licence and did not place on record the relevant documents.

"It is directed that notwithstanding anything stated in the sanctioned scheme and in the order dated February 5, 2010, the six overlapping licences of the Spice would not stand transferred or vested with Idea till prior permission of DoT is obtained," had said Justice Manmohan in his 51-page order.

The high court had further said that it is "of the view that costs should be imposed on Idea for not bringing to the notice of this Court the rejection letters dated January 7, 2010 and January 18, 2010 issued by DoT and for not placing on record relevant and material documents like Licence, Merger Guidelines and correspondence exchanged between the parties."

The company bench of the high court had further said that till DoT gives its permission to Idea to use the licences of the Spice Communication, the "overlapping licences of Spice shall forthwith stand transferred with DoT. The spectrum allocated for such overlapping licences shall also forthwith revert back to DoT."

It had further said that as Idea has used the overlapping licences without any prior permission of DoT from February 5, 2010 till date "in contravention of the Licence and Merger Guidelines, it is directed that it shall be open to DoT to pass any order for such breach".

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