There was no evidence that the Indian military had concluded or advised that its needs couldn’t be met when Antrix and the Government of India unlawfully terminated the Devas Agreement and expropriated investments made by Devas’s shareholders. Beginning in 2005, Indian authorities conducted reviews of future S-bandwidth requirements for military and para-military agencies regularly(1) and never expressed concern over S-band spectrum needs to Devas or even among other agencies before the Government of India unlawfully terminated the Devas Agreement.
The Suresh Report, commissioned secretly in 2009 by ISRO to investigate the Devas Agreement, found no suggestion of military need for S-band spectrum, even noting that the deal did not offer ISRO any explicit preference for spectrum should a future demand arise.(2)
In fact, two separate UNCITRAL arbitral tribunals, after reviewing all the evidence, ruled that these “needs” were never substantiated(3) or weren’t driving the termination.(4) The Hague UNCITRAL tribunal found that “although there are occasional references to the launch of a military satellite in the headlines or the core of some newspaper articles, none of these assertions are based on any reported statement by a public official and the Tribunal cannot consider such references as reliable evidence; in fact, the submitted documents tend to demonstrate that the GSAT-6 satellite continues to be planned for a multiplicity of purposes.”(5)
Moreover, Devas remained unaware of the existence of any needs for S-band spectrum of the Indian military until the Government of India announced that the Cabinet Committee on Security had decided to unlawfully terminate the Devas Agreement in February 2011. They were not made aware of alleged “competing demands for S-band capacity” until the date of Antrix’s unlawful termination notice.
- UNCITRAL Award on Jurisdiction and Merits to Mauritian shareholders of Devas, Paragraphs 118-119
- UNCITRAL Award on Jurisdiction and Merits to Mauritian shareholders of Devas, Paragraph 123.
- UNCITRAL Interim Award to Deutsche Telekom, Paragraph 364-369.
- UNCITRAL Award on Jurisdiction and Merits to Mauritian shareholders of Devas, Paragraphs 356-361.
- UNCITRAL Award on Jurisdiction and Merits to Mauritian shareholders of Devas, Paragraph 323. See also UNCITRAL Interim Award to Deutsche Telekom, Paragraph 364-369.