Vodafone Idea has requested the Government to allow it to pay Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) dues over 15 years.
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The telco has to pay statutory dues of about Rs 57,000 crore, as per DoT’s estimates, but has so far paid only Rs 3,500 crore. Its self-assessment showed that the firm was required to pay a total of Rs 23,000 crore, of which Rs 7,000 crore is the principal amount.
This telecom company has also asked for a tax refund, cuts in license fees and spectrum usage charges and the establishment of a floor for tariffs among measures to help remain viable.
Vodafone, in it’s letter to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) mentioned that it has over 30 Crore subscribers and it needs help from the Government to continue it’s business.
Both partners — UK-headquartered Vodafone as well as Kumar Mangalam Birla-led Idea — have maintained that the telecom joint venture would find it tough to continue as a going concern without any relief on the AGR front.
The letter was sent a day ahead of a meeting of Digital Communications Commission (DCC) – the highest decision-making body of DoT – which may discuss some steps on providing relief to stressed telcos such as Vodafone Idea.
In its letter, the operator sought a Goods & Services Tax (GST) refund of Rs 8,000 crore, which can be adjusted against its AGR dues, and the option of paying the remaining balance in the next 15 years, after an initial moratorium of three years.
DoT also had an internal meeting to work on a proposal that may provide relief to Vodafone Idea and the telecom industry as a whole.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said she had held several meetings and the DoT was working on the AGR matter.