The much awaited 2G mobile phone spectrum auction ended in a miserable flop. Only 9,407 crore was rallied in the process, which is far below the expectation of the report submitted by CAG to the telecom minister two years ago.
The auction was completed within two days. The total bids amounted to Rs 9,407.64 crore. The Telecom minister Kapil Sibal informed the press at the end of the bidding, which was a distant cry from the 35-day bidding for the 3G spectrum in 2010 that fetched round about Rs 67,719 crore. The government's target was a minimum of Rs 28,000 crore from the sale of 2G spectrum in the GSM band.
Sibal declined to comment on the Cag’s estimate of Rs 1.76 lakh crore as the loss to the coffers in giving away spectrum on first-come- first-serve basis in 2008.
None of the 5 companies bidding made any offer for pan-India air waves. Metro cities of Delhi and Mumbai accounted for 40% of the base price of Rs 14,000 crore for 5MHz of 2G spectrum, which again drew no bids.