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3G bidding ends; Govt to earn Rs 70,000 cr

New Delhi: Auction for 3G licence ended on Wednesday, with bids for pan-India licence touching Rs 16,828 crore that ensures the government a revenue of Rs 70,000 crore — double the amount it expected to collect.

According to sources, Bharti, Idea and Vodafone Essar have won in some of the circles in the auction that lasted 34 days.

Details of who have secured all-India licence are awaited.

As per the latest figures, the pan-India licence bid touched Rs 16,828 crore compared to the reserve price of Rs 3,500 crore.

With the close of auction for 3G telephony spectrum, the government would commence the auction for Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) spectrum in two days.

Nine leading mobile operators, including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, RCom and the Tatas, had entered the auction to grab spectrum for 3G services, which would allow users to access high-speed data downloads on mobile phones.

Slots were only available for three operators in most states, while four were available in in Punjab, Bihar, Orissa, Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.

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