New Delhi: Former DoT officer JS Deepak, who played a key role in carrying out 3G and BWA spectrum sale, has been roped by the government to manage the Supreme Court-ordered spectrum auction.
"He (JS Deepak) has been appointed convener of committee that will oversee design and process to conduct the due auction," a Telecom Ministry official told.
The committee is learnt to have representatives from Department of Commerce, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Department of Economic Affairs, Planning Commission along with Department of Telecommunications (DoT).
Deepak, currently joint secretary in Department of Commerce, was entrusted with a similar task for conducting 3G and Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) spectrum that fetched government over Rs 1.06 lakh crore in 2010.
In February 2012, Supreme Court cancelled 122 2G telecom licences issued during the tenure of former telecom minister A Raja, and asked government to complete spectrum auction by August 31.
The government had sought 400 days time from the apex court but the request was rejected. As per government's plan, it was to start spectrum auction from December 20 and allocate spectrum in March 2013.
Now, with just about 120 days left from the August 31 deadline, the government is under pressure to expedite the process for spectrum auction.
Under the previous methodology, both auctions took a total 50 days to be completed.
"Deepak was part of 3G and BWA auction committee. His experience will help us in expediting the auction process," the official said.
The 3G auction was completed in 34 days after completion of 183 rounds of bidding and BWA auction took 16 days to end after 117 rounds of bidding.
DoT has expedited the process of conducting auction. It has reduced the time for first review of spectrum auction recommendations given by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India from a month to 9 days approximately.
As per schedule, Trai had to give its recommendation by April 3 but it got delayed by 20 days.
DoT Secretary and Telecom Commission Chairman R Chandrashekhar has said that the department will send Trai's recommendations back to get clarity on various issues by May 2.
By middle of this month, DoT is expected to send its final view to Empowered Group of Minister which will take final call on spectrum auction.