The government today filed a presidential reference in the Supreme Court in reference to its 2 February order cancelling 122 second generation telecom licences awarded in 2008.
The Supreme Court has already admitted the government's review petition filed earlier this week seeking clarification on the process of auction to be followed for the cancelled licences; even as it rejected 10 other petitions filed by telecom companies and jailed former telecom minister A Raja seeking a review of its February order.
Today's 12-page reference signed by President Pratibha Patil raises eight further questions; mainly centering around whether all natural resources need to be mandatorily auctioned; and whether such a ruling oversteps the court's boundaries into the domain of the executive in framing policy.
The department of telecommunications (DoT) feels that the judgement has ramifications on several other sectors. Hence the government has put together its list of questions delivered to a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court.
While cancelling the licences, the judges also said that this method of allocating resources like spectrum is "fundamentally flawed". Only auction ensures transparency and fair pricing, the bench had observed.
The government, on the other hand, feels that auction is not invariably the best method for selling resources; as factors other than price too need to be considered.