Sistema Shyam TeleServices Limited (SSTL), which offers telecom services under the MTS brand, will be shutting down its operations in Uttar Pradesh (East) Circle from today, the company announced on its website. It said the license in question was among the 122 licenses the Supreme Court of India quashed early last year.
It has been a while since the announcement first went up on the site and concerned subscribers were asked to exhaust their balance and other benefits before the last day. The company also asked its users in the circle to avail of the mobile number portability facility to move to an operator of their choice and retain their existing numbers.
Owing to the Supreme Court's decision, MTS on March 23 closed shop in 10 circles: Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, North East, Orissa and Punjab.
MTS to shutting services in UP East circle
In its February ruling, the Supreme Court said the telecom companies that failed to win fresh 2G spectrum or did not participate in the spectrum auctions would have to end operations. The ruling read, “The telecom companies which have been unsuccessful in the bidding and those after the cancellation of the licences did not participate in the fresh auction are directed to cease from continuing from operation forthwith and the successful bidders will immediately start in their respective circles.”
Last December, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India asked SSTL, Telenor, Videocon and Tata Teleservices to inform their respective customers that services would be discontinued post January 18, as these mobile companies had their licenses cancelled following the auctions.
Uninor, the telecom company owned by Telenor and Unitech, complied with TRAI's order and shut shop in Mumbai recently. However, Uninor's operations in six other circles, including Maharashtra, Goa and Gujarat remains unaffected. This is thanks to the Telenor Group securing fresh spectrum for the next 20 years in Maharashtra (including Goa), Gujarat, UP East, UP West, Bihar (including Jharkhand) and Andhra Pradesh. The company says it will sign roaming agreements with other operators to ensure that all Uninor customers get seamless connectivity when travelling to Mumbai.