Vi submits review petition in AGR case

11 Aug 2021

Indian cellco Vodafone Idea (Vi) has filed a review petition seeking to overturn the Supreme Court’s recent ruling regarding the calculation of dues relating to the decade-long dispute over Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR), the Economic Times reports. As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, the apex court last month rejected an appeal to correct mistakes made by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) in determining the total owed by mobile providers in relation to an October 2019 ruling on the definition of AGR – upon which operators’ various licence fees are based – to include income from non-core sources, ending a dispute dating back to 2005. According to Vi and Bharti Airtel, the DoT made numerous mistakes in its calculations, including double-counting revenues, excluding payments made and failing to account for certain exemptions. Due to the length of the dispute and the imposition of interest fees, penalties and interest on the penalties, comparatively minor errors in calculating the principal amount have snowballed into vast increases in the amounts owed. For its part, Vi’s self-assessed dues came to around INR215 billion (USD2.9 billion), whilst the amount levied by the DoT was more than double that figure, at INR584 billion. In its July 2021 decision, the Supreme Court rejected the request to address the errors on the basis that the body had already ruled that the DoT’s calculations were final on two previous occasions.

India, Bharti Airtel, Vi (Vodafone Idea Limited, VIL)