Supreme Court agrees to hear plea by telcos for modification of verdict on AGR
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Supreme Court agrees to hear plea by telcos for modification of verdict on AGR

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear pleas by telecom majors in the next week.

Shruti Mahajan

The Supreme Court today agree to hear pleas filed by Telecom majors seeking a modification of the Court's October 2019 judgment on the interpretation of Adjusted Gross Revenue.

A battery of Senior Lawyers including Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Aryama Sundaram representing the various telecom service providers sought an urgent listing of the applications filed by Airtel, Vodafone and Tata Tele from the Apex Court today. The Bench headed Chief Justice of India SA Bobde along with Justices S Abdul Nazeer and Sanjiv Khanna agreed to list the matters in the next week.

The telecom companies, according to the October 24, 2019 judgment of the Bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra had granted a period of 90 days to the telecom companies to pay the dues sought from them on account of the new Adjusted Gross Revenue meaning. This period of ninety days is scheduled to lapse on January 24 bringing the companies back to the Supreme Court seeking a modification of this order.

The applications filed by the various companies are on similar lines and seek to negotiate the schedule for payment of these dues with the Department of Telecommunications (DoT).

While the service providers have sought to hold discussions and negotiations with the DoT to ascertain the mode and method of payment as well as the schedule for the same, the issue of the adverse impact of the judgment on the telecom industry is also invoked by the applicant companies.

Telecom Dues as per Government
Telecom Dues as per Government

While Bharti Airtel says that 90 days is not a sufficient time to undergo the process of evaluating dues and the payment of them, it also adds that an irreparable damage may be caused to the telecom industry at large.

The payment of the due amounts... without proper assessment and appropriate time period, will not only cause irreparable damage to the Appellants and to the telecom industry at large leading to possible disruption of a public utility service owing to the bad financial position of the telecom companies. This may impact the respondent's telecom proliferation policies and future initiatives.This may have far reaching consequences upon the economy.
Bharti Airtel in its application
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