Member of Parliament Rajeev Chandrasekhar has sought investigation into finance wing of the Department of Telecom in the matter relating to Rs 46,000 crore under-reporting of revenues by service providers.
“I urge the telecom minister to investigate whether the officials in DoT were colluding with the operators during 2006-10, why there is lack of oversight on the CsCA by DoT and recommend steps that can be taken to address this lack of oversight,” Chandrasekhar said in a letter written to Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha dated August 24, 2016.
The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) report tabled in Parliament in March said the government has suffered a loss Rs 12,488.93 crore as six private telecom operators, including RCom, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular, understated gross revenue by Rs 46,045.75 crore from 2006-07 to 2009-10.
The CAG had said test check of records in CsCA (Controllers of Communications Accounts) office revealed that CsCA had allowed telecom companies claims for deduction in respect of fixed line and roaming charges paid to other operators without proof of document as prescribed by DoT.
“During the course of audit of records maintained by CsCA for verification of deduction claims, discrepancies on various issues were noticed among different CsCAs. Also, within the same CsCA, different yardsticks were adopted for different operators due to lack of co-ordination within the CsCA,” the CAG said.
The MP said the observations made by the CAG raise some serious questions on the functioning of the DoT and point to the possibility that the CsCA is “either inept to carry out its duty or some officials within the CsCA were colluding with the telecom companies”.
Chandrasekhar also said the DoT had issued demand for licence fees amounting to Rs 896.07 crore in 2012 pertaining to the shortfall in 2006-07 and 2007-08 while the CAG for the same financial years has marked it as Rs 1,269.36 crore.
“This means there is a difference of Rs 373.29 in the calculations of shortfall as pointed out by the DoT and the CAG reports. This difference has not been explained,” he said.
The financial impact due to understatement of gross revenue stood at Rs 1,507.25 crore for RCom, Rs 1,357.68 crore (Tata Teleservices), Rs 1,066.95 crore (Airtel), Rs 749.85 crore (Vodafone), Rs 423.26 crore (Idea) and Rs 107.61 crore (Aircel), the CAG had said.