There will be no 3G spectrum auction in this fiscal year. Sources in the department of telecommunications (DoT) said Law Minister Veerappa Moily, who is member of the empowered group of ministers (EGoM), has said the auction should be held only when the spectrum becomes available.
The defence ministry had earlier said that it would be able to vacate 3G spectrum only towards the middle of this year.
The auction is now expected in August-September.
The finance ministry had wanted the 3G auction process to be completed within this financial year, and expected to raise about Rs 35,000 crore through the process.
The government has not yet taken a final decision on the number of slots to be auctioned.
The EGoMhad said four slots would be auctioned, but DoT sources say the defence ministry is proposing to link the number of slots with the spectrum available in different circles. In eight circles, three slots of 3G spectrum are available, while in some circles only two slots are available.