Telecom operators have been facing massive financial burden because of the default in AGR dues. Telco giants like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea, TTSL and many more have a whopping amount of AGR dues which needs to repaid to Trai. As the supreme court verdicts were against the telecom operators, the supreme court denied any relief to stressed telcos and directed them to pay their AGR dues before the final hearing scheduled on March 17, 2020. However, telecom operators are clearing off the AGR burden by paying a substantial amount of AGR dues. Recently, TTSL and TTML have paid an additional amount of Rs 2,000 crore to DoT.
AGR Payments Has Been Made in Good Faith
As per the sources of ETTelecom, the payment made by TTSL and TTML towards AGR dues have been made as an ad-hoc payment. Also, the payment has been made in good faith as a matter of abundant caution towards license fees, Spectrum Usage Charge (SUC) along with interest and penalty charges. As per the words of an official statement “The on account payment made by TTSL and TTML is subjected to reconciliation after the conclusion of the entire process of computation and verification of the figures has been processed by DoT back from FY 2007 which is spread across 20 circles”. TTSL and TTML have already paid Rs 2,197 crore to DoT on February 17 2020.
Vodafone Idea is Worst Hit by AGR dues
After the supreme court’s verdict, Vodafone Idea is worst affected by AGR dues. DoT has estimated that telco giant has to pay Rs 53,000 crore towards AGR dues. However, the telco self-estimated their AGR dues at Rs 23,000 crore out of which Rs 7,000 crore is the principal amount. Till date, Vodafone Idea has just paid Rs 3,500 crore to DoT. Also, the telco has noted that they will be forced to shut down if no relief measures are given by the government. To relief the stressed telco, the government is planning to create stress funds which will offer soft loans on easy terms. Vodafone Idea also requested the government to give them GST refunds worth Rs 8,000 and settle it with their AGR dues.