Vodafone Group Plc and Bharti Airtel Ltd. face an auction to keep using wireless spectrum in India that are set to expire in a year, a sale through which the government seeks to raise 400 billion rupees ($6.4 billion).
India’s communications minister Kapil Sibal said he has called for a meeting with owners of mobile-phone companies to resolve lawsuits that have resulted in a 85 percent drop in overseas investment in the industry.
India will prosecute any company that violated rules for obtaining mobile-phone licenses from 2001 and won’t spare those found guilty, Communications and Information Technology Minister Kapil Sibal said.
India raised less than 25 percent of its target from an auction of airwaves, a sale Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram was counting on to avert a sovereign credit downgrade. Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Idea Cellular Ltd. gained in Mumbai.
India’s telecommunications minister said the exchequer suffered a loss of about 170 billion rupees ($3.7 billion) from the sale of second-generation airwaves, almost one-tenth of what the nation’s top auditor estimated.
Kareem Serageldin, the ex-global head of Credit Suisse Group AG’s CDO business charged in a bonus- boosting fraud tied to a $5.35 billion trading book, was surprised by the U.S. indictment since he has been cooperating with investigators for four years, his lawyer said.