Licence fee dues: DoT likely to start sending notices this week

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New Delhi | Published: November 12, 2019 4:33:15 AM

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is likely to start sending notices to companies later this week regarding the licence fee dues owed by them to the government.

Apart from telcos, the government is also exploring if the Supreme Court order also applies to internet service providers (ISPs) and firms in non-telecom sector, which have taken a licence from DoT.

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is likely to start sending notices to companies later this week regarding the licence fee dues owed by them to the government.

The move comes in the backdrop of Supreme Court verdict which upheld DoT’s way of calculating adjusted gross revenue (AGR) while directing the companies to pay levies like licence fee and spectrum usage charges based on DoT’s AGR definition.

Apart from the principal amount, the companies have been also asked to pay penalty and interest on penalty.

Although name of the companies could not be ascertained but sources in DoT said notices will be issued to those firms whose amounts have been reverified.

“We will start issuing notices later this week,” said a source privy to details.

Another source said DoT is bound to follow the Supreme Court order to collect dues in three months.

“If the companies want more time, they should approach the apex court as DoT can’t extend the time on its own,” said the source.

As per the initial calculations, telecom operators like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and other companies may have to pay the government a whopping Rs. 1.33 lakh crore within three months.

Apart from telcos, the government is also exploring if the Supreme Court order also applies to internet service providers (ISPs) and firms in non-telecom sector, which have taken a licence from DoT.

In that eventuality, the total past dues could be much higher than the Rs. 1.33 lakh crore due from telecom operators and could swell beyond Rs. 3 lakh crore.

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