On Tuesday, shares of Vodafone Idea declined 7 percent before paring losses after a PTI report citing sources said that the telecom operators will have to pay 10 percent of their total AGR (adjusted gross revenue) liability by 31 March, irrespective of the part-payments made by them.
"The Supreme Court order is very clear that telecom operators have to make 10 per cent payment of the total dues as demanded by DoT by March 31, 2021. DoT has already raised demand for full AGR dues. The 10 per cent payment to be made by this March will be calculated on total AGR liability," a DoT official told PTI.
The report said according to DoT, operational telecom operators are expected to pay Rs 12,921 crore by 31 March, of which close to 80 percent has to be paid by Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel.
After the report, shares of Vodafone Idea fell 7.02 percent to touch an intraday low of Rs 9.65 apiece. The stock has been declining since 4 September, correcting by 17 percent till Monday.
Earlier this month, Vodafone Idea CEO Ravinder Takkar had said at a virtual press meet that the Supreme Court's order of allowing 10 years to telecom operators for clearing the AGR dues was a positive outcome. He also said that the company had already paid more than 10 percent of the AGR dues as ordered by the court, giving it time till March 2022 to pay its first instalment.
While the telcos, both Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel, maintain they have already paid more than the 10 percent of their AGR dues, the DoT is of the view that 10 percent of the total dues have to be paid irrespective of what has already been paid, creating confusion on the industry's calculations. The companies have now sought legal advice from their consultants on the future course of action based on the fine print of the top court's verdict.