Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea (Vi) and Tata Teleservices had earlier sought the help of the Supreme Court (SC) for the reassessment of their adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues. The telcos had argued that the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had made several mistakes while calculating the total AGR dues. As pointed by the operators, the government made arithmetical mistakes including double counting of the dues on certain occasions. Now, according to an ET Telecom report, the SC may hear the case for the reassessment of AGR dues by the concerned telcos on July 19, 2021.
Vodafone Idea to Benefit the Most If SC Rules in Favour of the Telcos
If the SC agrees to the plea of the telcos and asks the DoT to recalculate the AGR dues, and if the recalculation based on the inputs provided by the operators proves that the amount they had to pay was more than what they actually owed will benefit the industry a lot. But most of all, Vodafone Idea will be benefiting out of the decision from the SC.
Vi has a ton of debt on its shoulders. Because of the debt, the telco is unable to push aggressively on network expansion around the country. But if a certain percentage of the dues is laid off, it will help the operator a ton.
As per DoT’s calculation, Vi had to pay a total of Rs 58,400 crore as AGR dues while the other operators including Bharti Airtel and Tata Teleservices had to pay Rs 43,980 crore and 16,798 crore.
But as per Vi’s calculation, the telco only has to pay Rs 21,533 crore as AGR dues which is more than 50% less than the amount proposed by DoT. Even Airtel’s self-assessment proved that the telco had to pay only Rs 13,004 crore instead of the DoT’s proposed amount of Rs 43,980 crore.