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S Tel winds up service in Nagaland



Morung Express News
Recent cellular service entrant S Tel Pvt Ltd has either wound up or temporarily stopped its services in Nagaland following the pullout of Batelco from investing in the company. S Tel is a joint venture between Siva Group (formerly Sterling Infotech Group) and Bahrain Telecommunications Company (Batelco) which owns around 43% of the stakes.
The other but prime cause behind S Tel’s abrupt end is the circumstances surrounding 2G probe in the country. The Supreme Court had on February 2 cancelled six licenses granted to S Tel in January 2008. Following this order, Batelco exited from S Tel. The six licenses are in Assam, North-East, Bihar, Odisha (Orissa), Himachal Pradesh, and Jammu & Kashmir.
According to news reports, S Tel is down in Assam, NE and other states too. If such reports are any indication, then S Tel is not coming back.  Although the court ruled that the mobile service could continue for four more months, S Tel services in Nagaland went down from February 3, since Vodafone, with which it shared BTS mobile towers, disconnected the service of S Tel owing to expiry of contract. S Tel was sharing 13 BTS towers in Dimapur and six in Kohima with Vodafone.
Ever since the service went down, numerous subscribers have been visiting S Tel office at Khermahal junction in Dimapur to know the details but the office has remained shut, reports said.
Staff members of S Tel only know that the investors have stopped investing and so the cellular service has stopped too. The fate of the employees remains uncertain so is the fate of the subscribers. The only option available with the subscribers is to exercise the Mobile Number Portability option. Surprisingly, 13 days on since its service went down, the S Tel authority has so far not informed its subscribers regarding service failure. S Tel launched its service in Dimapur in August 2010.

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