Two FM radio license holders from the North East – PCM Cement Concrete Pvt Ltd and Syntech Informatics Pvt Ltd – who have qualified in the Phase II expansion of FM radio, are facing disqualification for failing to sign the CTI agreements with BECIL. PCM has the FM licenses for Siliguri and Gangtok, while Syntech has won the license for Gangtok.
The I&B Ministry had given a total of 90 days to sign the Common Technical Infrastructure (CTI) agreement with BECIL from the date of receiving the qualification letter from the Ministry. Out of the 90 days, 60 days was provided to sign the agreement with Prasar Bharati for the land required for the CTI and another 30 days to sign CTI agreement with BECIL. The last date for signing CTI for the Eastern Zone was April 29, 2006.
When contacted, BECIL Chairman KRP Verma refused to comment on the status of the two players, he only confirmed that the two players had not signed any CTI agreement with BECIL. However, Ministry sources confirmed that LOI cancellation letters had been issued to both the players.
Ashok Narayanan, VP, Syntech Informatics, said, “We have already paid the Prasar Bharati rental, but the CTI payment could not be made because our bank loan process got delayed due to the Assembly elections in Assam. We have made a request to the Ministry in this regard to extend the deadline till this month end and are waiting for a reply.”
On the PCM front, Narayanan said, PCM had sought some clarifications on the tender conditions. “In the tender document, the amount of money to be paid to BECIL was not specified. PCM had requested that it be allowed to use the present AIR infrastructure.”
When contacted, Association of Radio Operators of India (AROI) Convenor Rajiv Mishra, said, “The report is not yet confirmed by the Ministry. However, if AROI is approached by the two players for help, then we are ready to take the issue with the Ministry.”