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BPL Comm hangs up on international telephony

New Delhi, March 9 (PTI): The department of telecommunications (DoT) is understood to be considering cancelling the letter of intent issued to BPL Communications for international long-distance services.

According to department of telecommunications sources, the department has not received any plea from the company for extending the validity of its letter of intent, which expired this month.

Sources said that the department is now processing the case for cancellation.

BPL officials, however, could not be contacted for comments.

Recently two companies, Aircel and Noida Software Technology Parks, had opted out of the race for acquiring international long-distance licence and the department had cancelled the letters of intent issued to the two players.

The cancellations took place last week when the department of telecommunications did not receive any plea for extension from the two companies, whose letters of intent had expired on January 21 and January 23.

DoT has already issued ILD licences to a number of players, including Bharti. Most recently, state-owned telecom corporation Bharat Sanchar Nigam has received a go-ahead from the government for foraying into the arena.

BSNL’s proposal for entering international long-distance services was cleared by the department of telecommunications in January. However, the telecom corporation, which is India’s largest basic service provider, can start ILD services after the ‘preferred carrier’ status of Videsh Sanchar Nigam ceases next year.

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