Telcos mention AGR case in SC, seek urgent hearing of review petitions

Telecom firms Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea on Wednesday talked about their overview petitions in opposition to the apex courtroom’s earlier verdict on adjusted gross income (AGR), and sought an pressing listening to. The Supreme Court has requested the telecom firms to hunt readability on Thursday on itemizing of the AGR case.

The two telcos – hit most by the AGR verdict whereby Airtel has to pay over Rs 35,500 crore and Vodafone Idea has to place in over Rs 53,000 crore – have to pay up by January 23. Both have issued warning bells that with out adequate authorities or judicial aid, they might go kaput.

The telcos reportedly introduced up the urgency of the matter in entrance of Justice Arun Mishra, who was main the bench in SC.

This week, PSU RailTel Corporation moved SC, looking for a modification or a clarification that the AGR order pertains solely to Access Service Provider license holders akin to telcos, and to not Internet Service Provider (ISP) and the National Long Distance (NLD) Service Provider license holders such because the state-run firm.

AGR has been bone of rivalry between the telecom division and operators over years. License charges and spectrum utilization expenses are calculated on the idea of AGR.

The battle was lastly laid to relaxation by the apex courtroom in its verdict of October 24, final 12 months, which went in division’s favour and widened the definition of AGR to incorporate non-core gadgets. Now, some 15 telcos have to pay over Rs 1.47 lakh crore, which might rise additional, the federal government has mentioned. Industry estimates peg the cash owed by non-telecom firms, which maintain practically 3,500 licences, at over Rs Three lakh crore.

The resolution raised alarm bells and cry for assist from telcos. In November, the federal government cleared a 2-year moratorium on spectrum funds, offering a Rs42,000 crore money circulate aid to the three gamers -Vodafone Idea, Airtel and Reliance Jio. The authorities’s name to relook at telecom licenses come on the again of trade’s views a spectrum moratorium just isn’t sufficient and extra must be executed.

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Tarun Banerjee

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