| 29 Feb 2024
Government invites applications for e-auction of first batch of Phase III FM Radio stations

NEW DELHI: A notice was issued by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry (I&B Ministry) inviting applications for the first batch of Phase III FM auctions for 135 stations in 69 cities, which already have FM channels.

In addition to this, an e-auction will be held in eight new cities, in Jammu and Kashmir and the northeastern states.

While the NIA was issued yesterday, the pre-bid conference will be on 10 March, the last date for seeking clarifications on NIA will be 11 March, Clarifications to NIA on 16 March, last date for submission of Applications on 23 March, Publication of ownership details of Applicants will be 7 April, Bidder Ownership Compliance Certificate on 10 April, pre-Qualification of Bidders 17 April or completion of requisite formalities, whichever is later. There will also be a mock auction within a week of that, and the main e-auction a week thereafter.

The Ministry has placed the full details of the formalities on its website and has appointed M/s C1 India Private Limited as the ‘Auctioneer’ to advise the Government on the Auction. Administration of the e-auction shall also be the responsibility of M/s C1 India Private Limited.

It has also placed on the website the reserve price of each city and station for e-auction.

The Auction shall be a Simultaneous Multiple Round Ascending (SMRA) e-auction, conducted over the Internet. Bidders will be able to access the Electronic Auction System to be used for participation in the Auctions using web browsing software: Internet Explorer 11.x, or Mozilla 34.x or Google Chrome 37.x.

The EAS is a designated computer resource for the receiving of electronic records under the provisions of Section 13(2) of the Information Technology Act 2000, as amended from time to time.

Prior to the Auction, Bidders will have to procure Class-III Digital Signature Certificate(s) (DSC) for signing and encryption issued by any valid Certifying Authority (approved by Controller of Certifying Authorities) in India which is mandatory for accessing the Electronic Auction System (EAS). The details of the licensed Certifying Authorities (CAs) are available on the Government of India website.

Winning Bidders of FM channel(s) in each city shall be determined in the first stage, a Channel Allocation Stage, which will allocate FM channel(s) simultaneously for all the cities. A second stage, a Frequency Allocation Stage, will identify specific frequencies for the Winning Bidders.