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After Supreme Court’s rap, telcos pay ₹14,697 crore to DoT

Bharti Airtel, in a letter to the DoT, said that the ₹10,000 crore had been paid on behalf of Bharti Airtel Limited, Bharti Hexacom Limited and Telenor. File

Bharti Airtel, in a letter to the DoT, said that the ₹10,000 crore had been paid on behalf of Bharti Airtel Limited, Bharti Hexacom Limited and Telenor. File   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Bharti, Vodafone make part payment

Telecom services providers including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and Tata Group on Monday cumulatively deposited ₹14,697 crore as part payment of their adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues with the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). While Bharti Airtel paid ₹10,000 crore, Vodafone Idea remitted ₹2,500 crore and the Tata Group deposited ₹2,197 crore.

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Additionally, Vodafone Idea committed to pay another ₹1,000 crore by the end of this week.

The payments follow last week’s Supreme Court order that asked the managing directors and directors of the companies to show cause why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them for failing to pay even a “single penny” to the government despite an October 2019 court judgement.

Bharti Airtel, in a letter to the DoT, said that the ₹10,000 crore had been paid on behalf of Bharti Airtel Limited, Bharti Hexacom Limited and Telenor.

 

The company added that it was in the process of completing a self assessment exercise expeditiously and would make the balance payment upon completion of the same, before the next date of hearing in the Supreme Court.

The next hearing is slated for March 17, 2020.

In a filing to the stock exchanges, Vodafone Idea said its Board had met on Monday to take stock of the assessment made by the company on the amount that could be paid immediately towards compliance with the Supreme Court order.

“Based on the overall review of the position, the Board has authorised the Company to immediately pay to DoT a portion of the dues calculated based on AGR, aggregating to a sum of ₹2,500 crore today and a further ₹1,000 crore before the end of the week,” the company said.

 

The Board would take further stock of the situation to see how additional payments could be made, Vodafone Idea said.

“An urgent oral application made this morning before the Hon’ble Supreme Court for directions to be issued to the DoT to not take any coercive steps for recovery of AGR dues was not entertained by the Hon’ble Court,” it added.

Tata payment

Meanwhile, in a statement, Tata Teleservices said, “Tata Teleservices Limited (TTSL) and Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Limited (TTML) have made a payment of ₹2,197 crore... to the DoT towards License Fees and Spectrum Usage Charges.”

It added that TTSL and TTML had also submitted to DoT the details of calculations in support of the payment.

As per the DoT’s assessment, Bharti Airtel’s liabilities for licence fee and spectrum usage charge stand at about ₹35,586 crore, while that of Vodafone Idea and Tata Teleservices are about ₹53,000 crore and ₹13,823 crore, respectively.

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 1:26:32 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/after-scs-rap-telcos-pay-14697-crore-to-dot/article30845839.ece

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