State intervenes to settle Dialog licence dispute with SLT

The Sri Lankan Government has proposed a resolution for settling a dispute between the country’s two telecommunication giants ending long, dragging legal acrimony.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Management (CCEM) has directed Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) and the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) to settle the legal dispute regarding the renewal of a proposed integrated transmission network licence to Dialog.

SLT filed a fundamental rights case at the Supreme Court last year against TRC and Dialog Broadband Network with regard to the renewal of Dialog‘s operator licence.

Under Section 17 (3) (a) of the Sri Lanka Telecommunications Act, No 25 of 1991, the Commission has recommended to the President the renewal of Dialog’s licencefor a further period of 1o years with effect from November 10, 2015.

However, the SLT FR petition alleged that its rights had been violated when the TRC recommended the renewal the of operator licence.
The petition had citied TRC, Dialog and the Attorney General as respondents in their fundamental rights petition.

The Supreme Court granted leave to proceed in this case for the alleged violation of the SLT’s fundamental rights to equality by TRC and the second respondent Dialog Broadband Network (Pvt) Ltd.

The CCEM has directed the SLT and TRC to settle the Dialog’s operator licence dispute amicably, in an out-of-court settlement. This follows a meeting with all sides of the conflict at the CCEM.

Meanwhile Dialog Broad band filed a case at the Colombo High Court recently against SLT for acquiring its confidential information containing the company’s planned future services including comprehensive network architecture and service delivery architecture design specifications.

The court has ordered SLT to disclose the source of confidential information of Dialog and show cause as to why the interim injunction restraining SLT from using or disseminating this information contained in the request for proposals, pending the hearing and determination of the action, should not be granted.

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