Vodafone Idea pays another Rs 1,000 crore to government towards AGR dues

Vodafone Idea pays another Rs 1,000 crore to government towards AGR dues


(Representative image)

NEW DELHI: Telecom operator Vodafone Idea on Saturday said it has paid an additional Rs 1,000 crore to the government towards the statutory dues, taking its total payment to an aggregate Rs 7,854 crore.
The fresh payment comes at a time when the Supreme Court is slated to hear the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) matter on July 20.
The company had earlier deposited Rs 6,854 crore in three tranches, Vodafone Idea said in a regulatory filing.
“…the company has yesterday (July 17, 2020) paid a further sum of Rs 1,000 crore to the DoT (department of telecom) towards the AGR dues. The company had earlier deposited Rs 6,854 crore in 3 tranches,” the filing said.
With this, the company has paid an aggregate amount of Rs 7,854 crore towards the AGR dues, it added.
In the last hearing on the AGR matter on June 18, the Supreme Court had said that private telecom operators, including Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel, must come out with a “reasonable payment plan”, make some payment to “show their bonafide” and file their books of accounts for the last 10 years.
The statutory dues arose after the Supreme Court, in October last year, upheld the government’s position on including revenue from non-core businesses in calculating the annual AGR of telecom companies, a share of which is paid as licence and spectrum fee to the exchequer.
Telecom firms have to pay AGR related dues along with interest and penalty — estimated to be around Rs 1.6 lakh crore. The telcos have been keen on an extended timeline to pay up their statutory dues, in a staggered manner.
Vodafone Idea was facing a whopping Rs 58,000 crore demand in overall statutory dues, after the apex court last year ordered the non-telecom revenues to be included in calculating statutory liabilities.
Vodafone Idea had recently reported a staggering Rs 73,878 crore of net loss in fiscal ended March 2020, after it provisioned for Supreme Court mandated statutory dues.
The country’s third largest telecom operator had then said the liability has “cast significant doubt on the company’s ability to continue as a going concern”.
The DoT estimates had pegged the company’s AGR dues at Rs 58,254 crore for period up to FY 2016-17, but the company put the dues at Rs 46,000 crore “after adjustment of certain computational errors and payments made in the past not considered in the DoT demand”, the company had stated earlier during its fourth quarter results announcement.



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