AGR and Supreme Court  LIVE
AGR and Supreme Court LIVE
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Supreme Court hears case concerning payment of AGR Dues by Telcos: LIVE UPDATES

In the previous hearing, the Supreme Court had sought to know from Solicitor General Tushar Mehta if the spectrum can be sold by companies undergoing IBC proceedings.

Bar & Bench

A Justice Arun Mishra-led bench of the Supreme Court is hearing the case concerning the payment of Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) case by telecommunications companies.

Live updates of the hearing today feature on this page.

On July 2020, the Court had reserved its order on whether the telecom companies would be allowed to make staggered payments over 15 years While reserving its order, however, the Court had reiterated that no objection as to re-assessment or recalculation of the AGR dues would be entertained.

In the previous hearing, the Supreme Court had sought to know from Solicitor General Tushar Mehta if the spectrum can be sold by companies undergoing proceedings under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).

The Bench of Justices Arun Mishra, S Abdul Nazeer and MR Shah assemble.

Senior Advocates Harish Salve and Ranjit Kumar registering their appearance for State Bank of India (applicant in the case).

Senior Counsel Shyam Divan for Reliance Communications (R Com) is addressing the Court first.

Senior Advocate Shyam Divan is taking the Court through the process of initiation of Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP) against R Com.

Justice Mishra asks:

1. Who is using R Com's spectrum?

2. If it is unused, since when has it been unused?

Divan seems to obtain instructions on the same and will respond to the questions shortly.

Divan responds:

- A part of my spectrum is lying with me (R Com) for a while.

- A part of the Spectrum (800 MHz) is being used by Reliance Jio in a sharing arrangement entered into in 2016

Divan says that the Department of Telecom has been informed about the spectrum sharing arrangement.

The Court asks if Reliance Jio can be asked to pay AGR dues on behalf of R Com since AGR dues emanate from spectrum use.

"Company using spectrum benefits", Justice Mishra

The Court asks which persons have bid for R Com under IBC proceedings.

Justice Mishra: Why should Jio not pay dues when it has been using the spectrum for last three years?

Senior Counsel KV Vishwanathan appearing for Jio tells the Court that Jio has paid its AGR dues but on this question, he will need time to take instructions.

KV Vishwanathan seeks to explain the details concerning spectrum usage guidelines and spectrum sharing guidelines.

Justice Mishra: How can you (Jio) escape liability when you are using Spectrum and sharing revenue?

Justice Mishra (to Salve): When sovereign rights are transferred to someone then can secured creditors take precedence?

The public has a right over it...

Salve: What the Court is saying is that the payment for national resources should be on a different footing?

Supreme Court : Yes

Supreme Court directs for the spectrum sharing agreement between R Com and Jio to be placed on record.

Court also asks for details regarding the spectrum use of other telecom companies which are in proceedings under IBC.

SC: Let DoT also file the requisite documents in this regard. List on Monday at 3PM.

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