Telcos ordered to clear dues


New Delhi: Hours after the Supreme Court’s rap, the government ordered telecom companies to pay their dues by 11.59 pm Friday night.

The DoT, which faced the ire of the Supreme Court for putting on hold recovery of dues from telecom companies, started issuing circle or zone-wise demand notices to firms.

Companies like Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea have been issued notices by the Department of Telecom, reports suggested.

The telecom companies have to pay adjusted gross revenue (AGR) worth Rs 92,000 crore to the government.

The managing directors of Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, MTNL, BSNL, Reliance Communications, Tata Telecommunication and others were summoned to the court on March 17.

Telecom companies including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and Tata Teleservices had approached the Supreme Court in January, seeking modification in the top court’s verdict to get more time to pay up. According to the telecom department, Bharti Airtel owes around Rs 23,000 crore, Vodafone Idea Rs 19,823 crore and Reliance Communications Rs 16,456 crore.

The companies wanted the top court to allow them to ask the government to extend the deadline for payment beyond January 23.

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