SC clears way for awarding process of 4G internet licences

M Moneruzzaman | Published: 00:32, Jan 12,2018 | Updated: 01:21, Jan 12,2018

 
 

The Appellate Division on Thursday vacated until Sunday a High Court order that had stayed for six months the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission notice inviting applications from mobile companies to award licences for 4G internet service.
The stay order issued by Appellate Division’s chamber judge Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain on Sunday afternoon paved the way for awarding 4G licences, BTRC lawyer Khandaker Reza-E-Raquib told New Age.
The last date of dropping bidding documents is January 14, 2018, said a BTRC notice issued on December 4, 2017.
The chamber judge also set Sunday for hearing the matter through its regular Appellate Division bench.
On Sunday morning, a bench of Justice Naima Haider and Justice Zafar Ahmed stayed the BTRC notice asking the government and the BTRC to explain in four weeks why the notification inviting proposals from mobile phone operators to award 4G service would not be declared illegal.
The bench issued the order after hearing a writ petition filed by Banglalion Communications Limited’s chairman Abdul Mannan, also secretary general of Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh.
Senior lawyer Kamal Hossain argued that three WIMAX service providers QUBEE, Banglalion and Ollo, and state-run Bangladesh Telecommunication Company Ltd were given licences to operate broadband or 4G services as per BTRC’s broadband guidelines 2008.
He said that the BTRC broadband guidelines 2008 also prohibited mobile phone operators, which provide voice service, from providing 4G services.
But BTRC has now invited applications for providing licences to three mobile phone operators—Robi, Teletalk and Banglalink violating the 2008 WIMAX guidelines, he said.
Kamal Hossain with juniors Ramzan Ali Sikder and Saiful Alam Chowdhury appeared for Banglalion while the state and the BTRC was represented by attorney general Mahbubey Alam, additional attorney general Murad Reza and Imranul Kabir Bappi and Syed Mahsib Hossain.  

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