Unitech challenges move to auction Telenor JV assets

Last Updated: Thu, Aug 02, 2012 13:50 hrs

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Unitech Ltd, Telenor's minority partner in its Indian mobile telecoms joint venture, has filed a petition with the country's Company Law Board seeking to stop the joint venture company from auctioning off its assets, a Unitech spokesman said on Thursday.

In an auction notice on Wednesday, the joint venture, which operates under the Uninor brand, invited potential bidders to express interest by Aug 6 and said its majority owner Telenor was willing to bid in the auction.

The company law board is a quasi-judiciary body.

Unitech had already said on Wednesday it would take legal action against the planned auction of assets.

Telenor and property company Unitech fell out after their joint venture's operating permits were revoked under an order by by India's Supreme Court to recall the regional radio spectrum licences awarded to the joint venture and a number of its rivals in a scandal-tainted 2008 sale.

Telenor has blamed Unitech for losing the current licences and is seeking to scrap the joint venture. It has said it would either leave India or buy out Unitech and migrate the business to a new entity to buy fresh permits under a new round of licensing.

(Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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